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Jeff Cohn Cellars Arroyo Secco Ventana Vineyard Syrah 2006

Syrah/Shiraz from Central Coast, California
  • WS93
14.7% ABV
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14.7% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Ventana is a winemaker' wine, a wine that is not just about the fruit, although there is plenty of black cherry and hints of raspberry jam. This wine's prime focus is the spice of the vineyard.

Ventana Vineyard highlights roasted Herbes de Provence and cracked peppercorns; it has hints of wild game yet soft enough to seduce you. This wine is a temptress, a spider that draws you into its web. This wine is like an apple from the fairy tales and the Garden of Eden, just waiting for you to take a bite.

Pair With – Fish are a perfect compliment -- both smoked and grilled salmon to go well with this wine. While the wine is young, game birds and other poultry work well. After a few more years roasted meats are a better combination. Drink now to 10 years.

"We started aging this wine an extra year in the bottle before release. It actually takes that much time for this wine to just begin showing its potential." – Jeff Cohn.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 93
Wine Spectator
Firm, grapey wild berry and raspberry join pepper, spice, mineral and cedar in a full-bodied expression of Syrah, with hints of pepper, bay leaf, black licorice and mineral. Firms up nicely on the finish. Drink now through 2014.
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Jeff Cohn Cellars

Jeff Cohn Cellars

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Jeff Cohn Cellars, Central Coast, California
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When Jeff Cohn was the winemaker at Rosenblum Cellars, annually he crafted more than 70 different wines. Today, at his Oakland-based warehouse winery, the irrepressible vintner now limits himself to a mere 21 bottlings, focusing on Rhône varietals. Cohn's longtime relationships with some of California's top growers and vineyards enable him to source some of the state’s finest fruit, including Rockpile in Sonoma County, Fess Parker in Santa Barbara County and Stagecoach in Napa.

All JC Cellars wines are fermented in open top fermenting vessels that range in size from a half ton to eight tons, where each bin is hand punched down five times per day. This time-consuming procedure allows maximum exposure of skins to juice, intensifying the flavor of the fruit while handling it as gently as possible.

Central Coast

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The largest and perhaps most varied of California’s wine-growing regions, the Central Coast produces the majority of the state's wine. The sprawling district covers most of the vineyard land between San Francisco and Santa Barbara from the coast inland nearly all the way to the Central Valley. Encompassing an extremely diverse array of climates, soil types, and wine styles, it contains many smaller sub-AVAs, including Monterey, Paso Robles, Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Maria Valley, and Santa Cruz Mountains.

Just about every major international grape variety is planted within this vast AVA, from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay to Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel. A significant proportion of the region’s produce is generic, inexpensive bulk wine, but the Central Coast is also home to many small, artisanal wineries crafting unique, high-quality wines, as well as everything in between.

Syrah/Shiraz

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Marked by unmistakable aromatics, a savory palate, and an elegant texture, Syrah is capable of producing fascinatingly complex and long-lived wines with a stunning purple hue. Native to the Northern Rhône, Syrah’s best examples are found in Hermitage and Côte-Rôtie. It is also an important component of the GSM blends of the Southern Rhône and beyond, alongside Grenache and Mourvèdre. Both varietal Syrah and GSM blends are common in Australia and California and are gaining popularity in Washington State. In Australia, Syrah is known by the synonym Shiraz, which tends to indicate a bolder, fruit-driven style of wine, and is occasionally blended with Cabernet Sauvignon for added depth and structure.

In the Glass

At its best, Syrah shows aromas and flavors of purple fruits, fragrant violets, baking spice, white pepper, smoke, and even bacon fat. Many examples from California aim to recreate this savory style, while others focus more on concentrated fruit flavors. In Australia, under the name Shiraz, it shines as that country’s unofficial signature red grape, producing deep, dark, intense, and often jammy reds.

Perfect Pairings

Cool-climate Syrah, with its peppery spices, is a natural match with flavorful Moroccan-spiced lamb dishes, where the spice is more about flavor than heat. With Australian Shiraz, grown in warmer regions, heavy meat dishes with abundant protein and fat are a necessity to match the intensity of the wine.

Sommelier Secret

Due to the success of Australian “Shiraz,” this synonym for Syrah has been adopted by winemakers throughout the world. If the label says “Shiraz,” you can typically expect a plush, fruity, and potent wine made in the Australian style. New World "Syrah" will generally more closely resemble the French style.

HNYJCEVSY06C_2006 Item# 107958