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Sequel Syrah 2009

Syrah/Shiraz from Columbia Valley, Washington
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14.8% ABV
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14.8% ABV

Winemaker Notes

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

Critical Acclaim

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RP 93
Robert Parker's 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.
WE 92
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.
WS 92
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.
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Sequel

Sequel

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Sequel, Columbia Valley, Washington
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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.

Columbia Valley

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A large and geographically diverse AVA capable of producing a wide variety of wine styles, the Columbia Valley AVA is home to 99% of Washington state’s total vineyard area. A small section of the AVA even extends into northern Oregon!

Because of its size, it is necessarily divided into several distinctive sub-AVAs, including Walla Walla Valley and Yakima Valley—which are both further split into smaller, noteworthy appellations. A region this size will of course have varied microclimates, but on the whole it experiences extreme winters and long, hot, dry summers. Frost is a common risk during winter and spring. The towering Cascade mountain range creates a rain shadow, keeping the valley relatively rain-free throughout the entire year, necessitating irrigation from the Columbia River. The lack of humidity combined with sandy soils allows for vines to be grown on their own rootstock, as phylloxera is not a serious concern.

Red wines make up the majority of production in the Columbia Valley. Cabernet Sauvignon is the dominant variety here, where it produces wines with a pleasant balance of dark fruit and herbs. Wines made from Merlot are typically supple, with sweet red fruit and sometimes a hint of chocolate or mint. Syrah tends to be savory and Old-World-leaning, with a wide range of possible fruit flavors and plenty of spice. The most planted white varieties are Chardonnay and Riesling. These range in style from citrus and green apple dominant in cooler sites, to riper, fleshier wines with stone fruit flavors coming from the warmer vineyards.

Syrah/Shiraz

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Marked by unmistakable deep purple hue and savory aromatics, Syrah accounts for a good deal of some of the most intense, powerful and age-worthy reds in the world. Native to the Northern Rhône, Syrah still achieves some of its maximum potential here, especially from Hermitage and Côte-Rôtie.

Syrah also plays an important component in the canonical Southern Rhône blends based on Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre, adding color, depth, complexity and structure to the mix. Today these blends have become well-appreciated from key appellations of the New World, namely Australia, California and increasingly, with praise, from Washington.

In the Glass

Syrah typically shows aromas and flavors of purple fruits, fragrant violets, baking spice, white pepper and even bacon, smoke or black olive. In Australia, where it goes under the name Shiraz, it produces deep, dark, intense and often, jammy reds. While Northern Rhône examples are typically less fruity and more earthy, California appears increasingly capable of either style.

Perfect Pairings

Flavorful Moroccan-spiced lamb, grilled meats, spareribs and hard, aged cheeses are perfect with Syrah. Blue cheeses are perfect with a dense and fruit-driven Australian Shiraz.

Sommelier Secret

Due to the success of Australian “Shiraz,” winemakers throughout the world have adopted this synonym for Syrah when they have produced a plush and fruit forward wine made in the Australian style. As an aside, Australians are also fond of tempering their fruit-forward Shiraz by blending with Cabernet Sauvignon, which adds depth and structure.

PBC9127100_2009 Item# 123578