The appearance was clear, a deep intense ruby with ruby stained tears.
On the nose, the wine was clean, with medium intensity aromas of blueberry, black olive, lavender, black pepper, and chocolate. When tasted in July 2019 the wine was still developing.
On the palate, the wine was dry with high acidity, medium (+) tannins that were fine-grained, medium (+) alcohol, medium (+) body, and had pronounced flavor intensity. The wine had a good balance and a long finish.
In conclusion, the wine was of very good quality. The price point is super-premium - over $60. One could drink it now or let it age further. We decanted the wine for about 30 minutes before tasting and proceeded to enjoy the wine over a period of three days.
Why does Syrah from Pride Mountain Vineyards taste like this?
Syrah in the Sonoma County area is typically selected from north-facing and cooler slopes. The aromas and flavors, as well as the high acidity and moderate to high alcohol levels of these types of wine result from the combination of the grape variety, cooler exposures in a Mediterranean climate. In the cellar, winemakers manage the high tannins through techniques like micro-oxygenation and modifying how long the grape skins are left in contact with the grapes.
When Syrah spends time in oak (in this case 16 months) the oak barrels are older and neutral. If aged in new oak barrels one might taste primarily the oak and not the brambly dark fruit the grape is known for.
If you like the flavors of Australian Shiraz or Syrah from Paso Robles and are looking for a little more subtle expression of Syrah from California, you might like this wine.
Pride Mountain Vineyards Sonoma County Syrah Food Pairing
Syrah from warmer vintages like 2013 typically has more black fruit flavor characteristics, while cooler vintages or cooler locales like Sonoma County might have both black and red fruit flavor characteristics.
The high acidity, pepperiness, and mix of black and red fruit flavor characteristics make it a good classical pairing with red meats and poultry as well as ‘meaty’ vegetarian dishes containing black beans or polenta. These wines are also enjoyed with meaty stews and chili.
Many people may not like Syrah paired with delicate and subtle foods. The intense flavors and pepperiness of the wine can overwhelm most fish and mild cheeses. Also with its higher alcohol level, not everyone likes high alcohol with spicy food together. Last, vinegar-based sauces might not be a pleasant combination with Syrah from the New World.
Where to Purchase Pride Mountain Vineyards Syrah Sonoma County
We purchased this wine on a visit to Pride Mountain Vineyards. The wine can be purchased from the winery, from select bottle shops upon request, and can be found on some restaurant lists.