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B Leighton Olsen Bros Syrah 2018

ID No: 448558
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 94 Points
Vintage:2018
Bottle Size:750 ml
Product Description

B Leighton Olsen Bros Syrah is made from 100 percent Syrah. 

Inviting, Intriguing, brooding and vivacious. Black cherry, wet earth, grilled meats, fireplace ash and black pepper take you there and then beautiful notes of seaweed, camphor and black tar finish it off in time for another sip and more exploration of this wonderful wine.

 review:

Lots of smoky and grilled-meat character to the ripe-berry highlights. It’s full-bodied with round, juicy tannins and lots of flavor and intensity. Yet, it remains fresh and vivid at the end. Vanilla touches make it even more interesting. Drink or hold.

-James Suckling 94 Points

The 2018 Syrah Olsen Brothers Vineyard, from a site in Yakima Valley, is a mix of clones that were not destemmed, and it was brought up mostly in neutral oak. It's a classic Yakima Valley Syrah with its full-bodied, rich, meaty style as well as ample darker fruits and notes of smoked game, chocolate, tapenade, and spice. It reminds me of a great vintage of Jaboulet's Domaine de Thalabert and should keep for 15 years.
-Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points



Winery: Charles Smith K Vintners

Located at the base of the Blue Mountains in Walla Walla (Washington State), Charles Smith opened his first winery, K Vintners, in December of 2001. The first release, 1999 K Syrah from Walla Walla Valley, initiated the style of winemaking that Charles continues today: small lots of single vineyard Syrahs and field blends of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Tempranillo, and Viognier, all of which are hand-picked, fermented with naturally occurring yeasts and basket pressed.

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Alain Jaume Tavel Rose Le Cretace 2021

Alain Jaume Tavel Rose Le Cretace is made from 60% Grenache, 30% Syrah and 10% Mourvedre

Rosé de saignée (bleed technique) with a vibrant ruby color, complex and elegant, notes of crushed strawberries and rose petals.

Tavel Le Cretace Rose gives up vibrant wild strawberry, watermelon, crushed flowers and hints of spice to go with a medium-bodied, layered and seamless profile on the palate. A classic rose from this appellation, enjoy this beauty with food over the coming year or two.

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Mt. Brave Cabernet Sauvignon 2018

Mt Brave Cabernet Sauvignon is made from 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6.5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Merlot, 1.5% Petit Verdot and 1% Malbec.

Review:

Lots of cassis and black raspberry fruits as well as classic Mount Veeder notes of lavender, violets, bouquet garni, and rocky, mineral-like notes emerge from the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon. A deep, full-bodied mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, it has a plush, layered texture, beautiful tannins, a deep, concentrated mid-palate, and a great finish. Another head-turning wine from this label, it’s a candidate for the best Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon out there at the price point.

-Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points


This packs in lots of dense yet sleek blackberry, mulberry and black currant fruit flavors, while anise, sassafras and violet notes add range throughout. There's plenty of structure embedded as well, though it tilts to the zesty, acid-driven side of the ledger, further enlivening the fruit. This has a serious oak treatment, but it's very precise and fine-grained. For the cellar. Best from 2022 through 2038. 6,753 cases made

-Wine Spectator 95 Points


Blackberry and chili with hints of cloves and graphite. Bitter chocolate, too. Full-bodied, very linear and tight with intense tannins that lead you down the finish. Solid structure. Needs four or five years to open up. Better after 2025.

-James Suckling 95 Points

A blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6.5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Merlot, 1.5% Petit Verdot and 1% Malbec, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Mt. Veeder was aged for 22 months in oak barrels, 82% new. Deep garnet-purple colored, it springs from the glass with vibrant crème de cassis, baked plums and Morello cherries scents, followed by nuances of sautéed herbs, clove oil, mocha and scorched earth. The full-bodied palate is densely laden with layers of black and blue fruits, sporting a rock-solid backbone of grainy tannins and great tension, finishing long and minerally. 

-Wine Advocate 95+ Points

 Wine Advocate: 95 Wine Spectator: 95 97 Points
Ayni Malbec Paraje Altamira 2019

Ayni Malbec Paraje Altamira is made from 100 percent Malbec.

Ayni is the Quechua term for the principle of reciprocity, practiced for centuries by the Andean people - "in order to receive, you first have to give." Chakana's renowned Paraje Altamira vineyard, which sits 3,300 feet above sea level, bears the name Ayni & is the source of the Ayni wines.

Deep ruby-red in color with violet hints. Complex and intense bouquet, featuring blackberries, cherries and plums, with delicate floral notes and spices. Balanced and fresh; full-bodied with good length of spices.

The grapes come from the fantastic area of Paraje Altamira in the Uco Valley, Mendoza.

Irrigation: Drip 
Harvest: Manual 
Maceration: 4 days cold soaking below 10°C in stainless steel tanks 
Alcoholic fermentation: 80% of the wine in stainless steel tanks for 15 days with wild yeasts, 20% of the wine in 225-liter closed French oak barrels 
Malolactic fermentation: Yes

Pairs well with grilled meats and stews.


Review:

"The 2019 Malbec Ayni comes from Paraje Altamira, Uco Valley and was aged for 12 months in foudres. Unfiltered, this is an austere red of nuance and depth. The nose is very much that of the region with fresh plum, violets and thyme. The potency is tempered by the aging process in favor of subtlety and the addition of whiffs of smoke, tobacco and cedar. Juicy in the mouth with a striking chalky feel, compact flow and mild character, it is a linear wine but maintains Malbec’s smooth, voluminous nature. An elegant interpretation of a region with character. - Joaquín Hidalgo"

- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (November 2021), 94 pts


 Vinous Antonio Galloni: 94
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B Leighton Petit Verdot 2017

B Leighton Petit Verdot is made from 100 percent Petit Verdot.

Dark and brooding. Vibrant, beautiful and tantalizes the senses with violets, black cassis, pipe tobacco and forest floor. Elegant, fresh, deep and refined. It continues with black raspberry, ocean breeze, orange zest and a touch of fresh herbs. Need I say more? Drink up, buttercup.


Review:

A spicy red, showing blackcurrant and walnut character with some new wood. It’s full-to medium-bodied with chewy fruit and a nutty finish. Drink now.

James Suckling 91 Points

B Leighton Petit Verdot 2016

B Leighton Petit Verdot is made from 100 percent Petit Verdot.

Beautiful, lively and focused at first approach. Expressing black cassis, blackberry, brambles and thyme combining with crushed gravel, pencil shavings and floral notes. It is a fantastic expression of Petit Verdot that is rich and velvet on the palate, all at the same time. So much depth and length it seriously takes your breath away.


Review:

Lastly, the 2016 Petit Verdot comes from a higher elevation block and was brought up in 40% new French oak. It has a great bouquet of white pepper, chocolatey dark fruits, tobacco, and a kiss of violets to go with a full-bodied, incredible elegant profile on the palate. You don’t find Petit Verdot with this level of finesse very often, and it has silky tannins, good mid-palate concentration, and a great finish. It’s another stunning wine from Leighton I’d be thrilled to drink over the coming 10-15 years.

-Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points

 94 Points
Betz Family Domaine de Pierres Syrah 2018

Betz Family Domaine de Pierres Syrah is made from 100% Syrah.


With our long history of making single site syrah's in Washington, it made sense for us to venture into the Rocks District of Milton Freewater in the Walla Walla Valley to bring you our newest syrah, "Domaine de Pierres."

The Rocks AVA produces syrah that shows a distinct character, separating it from any other site in Washington State. One thing in particular that has drawn people here is the gallet stones present throughout the valley. They are very similar to the pudding stones that are found in Châteauneuf-du-Pape, and can be anywhere from golf ball size, to softball size or larger. Since we purchased the vineyard in 2014 we have been tilling the earth multiple times every season to expose these rocks. The gallet stones act like a heat sink, giving a little extra push to help ripen syrah in an area with marginal heat accumulation. 

In the glass, Domaine de Pierres stands out from our other syrah's because of its incredibly savory profile. Notes of roasted meat, fresh herbs, olive tapenade, tobacco and graphite are supported by dark fruit, espresso, and lavendar. The wine has a lower acidity and higher PH than our other wines, which contributes to a velvety, full bodied mouthfeel. Even in the cellar, we immediately noticed a difference in the color, aromatics and flavor that these syrah grapes were able to express. 

The other big reason that we are so excited about the wine from this particular AVA, is that the history of the Rocks is happening right now! Our vineyard, “Ancient Stones,” has only been planted there since 2007, and the beginning of the Rocks as a wine growing region only really started in the 1990's. There is a lot of energy and exploration going on, and it has been a fun experience for our team to be a part of it.  We still have so much to learn about this region and it is very exciting to feel like we are on the upward swing!


Review:

Coming from the Ancient Stones Vineyard in the Rocks region of Walla Walla, the 2018 Syrah Domaine De Pierres is 100% Syrah that was not destemmed and was brought up in a mix of small and larger barrels. Classic Rocks notes of red and blue fruits, peppered game, exotic flowers, sweet mulch, and other herbal and cedary notes define the bouquet, and it's medium to full-bodied, with a soft, rounded texture, ripe tannins, and a great finish. While it has plenty of funkiness, it also has ample fruit as well as purity. It's approachable today yet will keep for 10-15 years.

-Jeb Dunnuck 97 Points


 97 Points
Betz Family La Serenne Syrah 2018

Betz Family La Serenne Syrah is 100% Syrah

La Serenne is the most reflective of the site/vintage dynamic of our three single-site 2012 Syrahs. Lovers of this wine know that its source, the Boushey Vineyard, is the highest altitude of the three vineyards and is typically the latest harvested. This cool site was accentuated by the cooler season and the results reflect the seriousness of this vineyard and its care.

An extraordinary, nearly impenetrable black purple color leads to a concentrated, inky aromatic impression: smoky black cherry and wild blackberry dominate, but a litany of supporting aromas is already emerging: smoke, violet, mushroom, roasted meat, Chinese 5 spice and minerals. It has a full attack on entry and a big, rich mouthfeel that goes on and on.


Review:

The 2018 Syrah La Serenne comes from the Yakima Valley and is always a more gamey, complex, exotic Syrah than the Cote Rousse. All from the Boushey Vineyard and seeing 70% stems, its ruby/purple hue gives way to a great nose of blueberries, lavender, smoked game, and peppered meat. Blind, I'd have guess it was from the Rocks region in Walla Walla given it's gamey exotic, floral character. Beautiful on the palate as well, with medium to full body, building tannins, and plenty of fruit, it needs 2-3 years of bottle age and will cruise for over a decade.

-Jeb Dunnuck 94 Points

 94 Points
Booker Fracture Paso Robles Syrah 2018

Booker Fracture is made from 100 percent Syrah.

Often described as a Booker flagship, Fracture is one of the world’s great Syrahs. Only the softest Syrah in barrel makes the cut for this dense and powerful wine. The namesake pays homage to the calcareous soil in our vineyard, the limestone causes it to ‘fracture’. Deep and mysterious at first sight, the 2018 vintage is rich and velvety on your palate. There is an interesting balance of earth and fruit, with traces of sweet beets, dark plums and chocolate. Though this silky wine will pair with anything, our thoughts are going to salty popcorn by the fire or Dutch Gouda cheese with some black truffle mustard. 




Review:

The inky colored 2018 Fracture is another wine that’s going to push at the upper limits of the grading scale. Awesome crème de cassis, charred meats, graphite, plenty of minerality, and subtle oak nuances all flow to a powerful, full-bodied, beautifully balanced Syrah. Similar in style to the 2017 with its powerful yet elegant vibe as well as good acidity, it’s a magical Paso Robles Syrah in the making.

- Jeb Dunnuck 98-100

 100 Points
Betz Family Besoleil 2018

Betz Family Besoleil is made from 55% Grenache, 23% Mourvèdre, 11% Syrah and the rest Cinsault,

Grenache is the star of Besoleil, but it's not the whole story. Additional southern Rhone varieties have found their way into the blend and today the wine includes Counoise, Cinsault, Syrah and Mourvèdre . Our cellar treatment has also evolved in several ways in order to promote additional nuance from these southern Rhone gems. Larger, neutral oak cooperage of 300 and 500 liters provides less surface-to-volume ratio, resulting in slower evolution and less oak influence in the final wine. Aging up to two-thirds of the blend in concrete vessels helps maintain a bright, fresh fruit character.

The story of Besoleil begins with our long-held belief that a precise marriage of soil and site can produce a profound expression of Grenache in Washington. We put that belief to the test with Besoleil's first vintage in 2003. While the Grenache in the earliest vintages of Besoleil was sourced from various vineyards throughout the Columbia Valley, two sites in particular (Olsen Vineyards in the Yakima Valley and Upland Vineyards on Snipes Mountain) have excelled as uniquely distinctive for Grenache. These two sites are the sources for the entirety of the Grenache in Besoleil today.

Besoleil is our Spanish/French whimsy for "kissed by the sun". It alludes to the warm, sunny days in the south of France that impart an intensity of character to the Grenache grape and its southern Rhone relatives. Imagine the windswept vineyards of Chhateauneuf-du-Pape, the inspiration for this wine, where Grenache thrives alongside a dozen or more other grape varieties.

Review:

The Southern Rhône blend from this estate, the 2018 Bésoleil checks in as 55% Grenache, 30% Mourvèdre, 12% Counoise, and 3% Syrah that was 60% destemmed and brought up in used barrels. It's always a lighter hued effort and offers a translucent ruby color as well as perfumed flowers, sandalwood, herbes de Provence, and assorted red fruit characteristics. Medium-bodied, nicely textured, and balanced, it's a charming, undeniably delicious blend to enjoy over the coming 5-7 years or so.

-Jeb Dunnuck 91 Points

 91 Points
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