Sequel Syrah 2009
Syrah/Shiraz from Columbia Valley, Washington
Opaque and blue-ish purple in color, this is an expressive wine offering vibrant aromas of sweet dark fruits, grilled meats and freshly roasted chestnuts. Dark cherry flavors laced with notes of nutmeg and savory spice are framed by refined tannins and a delicate acidity that lingers on the finish.
Blend: 99% Syrah, 1% Cabernet Sauvignon
The Wine Advocate - "The Long Shadows 2009 Sequel – a virtually pure Syrah, whose cuvee name was chosen as an allusion to winemaker John Duval’s legacy as long-time winemaker for Penfolds and its legendary Grange – was sourced largely from the 1992 Sagemoor Bacchus and 1994 Boushey plantings, among the oldest of their varietal in the state. Allen Shoup relates that when he approached Duval to head a Syrah project under the Long Shadows umbrella, the latter’s initial reluctance stemmed from the predominance of young vines among Washington’s Syrah plantings and, in particular, among those to which Shoup at the time had access. But Shoup persevered in ferreting-out small amounts of fruit from the aforementioned – and by Washington standards old – vines, and subsequently had some small acreage planted with Australian selections that came into production for this bottling. Chocolate, mocha and brown spice elements are prominent already in the nose, creating confectionary expectations that are, at most, only partly confirmed on an expansive, plush palate. Happily, there is primary dark berry juiciness along with hints of mint, black pepper, smoky black tea, and iodine to take this wine in a properly profound direction and offer counterpoint to its sense of sweetness. What’s more, there is a lovely sense of lift and energy to the finish that strike me as Washington-typical even though not especially evident in the current Long Shadows collection when taken as a whole."
International Wine Cellar - "od bright, deep ruby. Complex, scented nose combines crushed rock, licorice, blackberry, smoked meat, black pepper and graphite. A bright, intense fruit bomb in the mouth, with dark berry flavors accented by cocoa powder, black pepper, dark chocolate and rosemary. Very clean and primary syrah with terrific depth. Finishes with a serious tannic spine for aging and subtle rocky character.
Rating: 93(+?) "
Wine Spectator - "Focused, plush and generous, with pomegranate-accented dark berry and tobacco flavors, striking a nice balance of suppleness, rich flavors and expansion on the finish."
Wine Enthusiast - "Rich, dark, dense and smoky, this is a fruit-driven Syrah that has a splendid bouquet of ripe black fruit. Some herbal accents and a streak of bark runs through the tannins."
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John Duval, formerly of Australia’s iconic Penfolds Grange, chose the Columbia Valley as his “Sequel” for the continuation of his life’s work with Syrah. Sequel is one of six distinct red wines from the Long Shadows Vintners Collection.
A generous and concentrated wine of great character, Sequel is notable for its deep purple hue, rich aromatics and layers of flavor. Almond, dark chocolate and cherry notes fill the glass, complimented by hints of black licorice, blackberry, cocoa powder and a touch of smoke.
Carefully selected, hand-harvested grapes are fermented in two to four-ton tanks using a variety of fermentation methods including “rack and return,” a technique John Duval frequently uses in Australia. This allows for gentle handling of the berries while extracting optimal color and richness. The wine is aged an average of 18 months in 65 percent new French oak barrels.
Duval uses Syrah from The Benches at Wallula and Alder Ridge for their dark flavored fruits. Red Mountain grapes provide the structure of the wine and Boushey Vineyard in Yakima Valley brings the elegance to Sequel. View all Sequel Wines
About Columbia Valley
Columbia Valley is the largest of Washington State's wine growing regions, with almost 11 million acres. It encompasses a number of smaller regions, including Yakima Valley, Walla Walla Valley, Red Mountain and more. The vast area consists of a range of climates, allowing viticulturists to plant a diverse selection of grape varieties. Most wineries plant rows sparsely, which helps the vines survive the harsh winters.
Notable FactsMerlot is the most popular and most planted grape of the area, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. Syrah and Riesling are also popular and continue to grow in acreage.
About WashingtonRelated Links:Now the number two producer in the United States, Washington State has also grown in quality.
So how does a state known for rain and coffee produce high quality wines? They plant their grapes on the east side of the Cascade mountains, away from that ever-present rain cloud that sits along the coast. Perhaps wine grapes do well since the sandy loam soils east of the Cascade range give way to an almost desert-like land, saved from drought only by the helpful rivers that run through the area – and the good irrigation systems.
Thinking that the state would do best with typical northern growing grapes like Riesling and Gewurtztraminer, turns out the apple state is well-suited for reds, namely Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and, more recently, Syrah. Of course, whites have not been forgotten - Washington State Rieslings range from bone-dry to sweet, are well-structured and high quality, and Chardonnay dominates most of the other white plantings, making a range of wines. But the reds of the region, Merlot in particular, have made Washington State a quality force to be reckoned with.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.
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