Winery/Vineyard: Masia de la Vinya Winery
Product/Varietal: 100% Syrah
AVA on Bottle: Temecula Valley
Winemaker: Justin Knight
3.3 out of 5 stars on Vivino (all vintages).
How They Describe It
Our 2015 Syrah is a full-bodied bold wine that has aromas of red licorice and currant with flavors of blueberry that tapers off to a spicy peppery finish.
How I Describe It
The Masia de la Vinya 2015 Syrah has deep color intensity. A layer of silt creates a bit of cloudiness, though the effect is purely aesthetic, and doesn’t influence the quality of the wine. Interestingly, the hue is blood red, sporting both hints of purple as well as garneting around the rim.
Black cherry, ripe strawberry, and black currant whoosh from the glass of Masia de la Vinya 2015 Syrah, even from a distance. Upon closer inspection, aromas of blueberry, white pepper, freshly baked bread, and cloves become clear. The wine also displays undertones of flint, lavender, cold brew coffee, and a hint of forest floor.
The 2015 Syrah showcases black currant and black cherry most prominently, alongside savory black pepper. Charred wood, spicy chili flakes, nutmeg and bread dough, as well as a creamy mouthfeel, complete the wine’s primary flavors. That said, there are leathery and meaty flavors on the finish, along with the forest floor detected on the nose — signs of the wine’s maturity.
This is a dry wine with high alcohol (14.3% ABV). Tannins are high, though both smoothly integrated yet slightly chewy. Acid is medium-plus. It’s distinctly full-bodied, with medium-plus intensity and a medium-plus finish.
Why is This Wine Special?
Temecula Wine Country visitors will find no shortage of wines to sample. Some wineries specialize in the obscure; others craft world-class wines from traditionally cool-climate grapes; still others create from popular Bordeaux varietals. And most Temecula wineries meet these challenges with quite a bit of success.
However, there are a handful of varietals which easily find natural homes in the Temecula Valley AVA. Broadly speaking, they include grapes traditionally from the Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal), Italy, and France’s Rhône region. The latter is where Syrah claims its heritage.
In fact, Syrah grows so well in Temecula’s terroir that the vast majority of wineries produce bottles of it. However, between the various microclimates across the AVA’s 3,000 planted acres, year-to-year weather patterns, and differing winemaking styles, each winery’s Syrah is notably unique.
This, among other things, makes my job a lot of fun.
The Masia de la Vinya 2015 Syrah spent 16 months aging in new oak barrels. Barrel origin is important in winemaking, as wood from different countries imparts different characteristics. Masia de la Vinya used a mix of American, French and Eastern European oak, combining the best of each.
Another important note is the wine’s maturity. It’s common for wineries to release bottles while still developing. Younger, more fruit-forward wines appeal to some drinkers, and afford collectors the ability to cellar their bottles. On the other hand, other wineries choose to release their wines as they reach peak maturity, to showcase what the winemaker envisioned without years of waiting and storage. Masia de la Vinya winemaker Justin Knight chose the latter. His 2015 Syrah has reached peak maturity, and can be opened without additional aging.
When & How I Would Drink It
This is a dark, rich wine, so it should pair with dark, rich foods. Thick, juicy grilled hamburgers, beef ribs, and smoked brisket are ideals. But you’d also find tremendous success pairing with grilled or roasted vegetables as well. Slice up some bell peppers, broccoli or cauliflower, or a full head of garlic (The Stinking Rose style) and you’ll have an outstanding dish with your glass of Masia de la Vinya 2015 Syrah.
With its 14.3% alcohol content and sophisticated tannins, this is also a wine worth opening when you’re ready to sit down and really enjoy it. There are a lot of flavors and aromas going on in the glass, and you won’t want to miss experiencing any of them.
How to Get It
Bottle Price: $37.00 ($29.60 for wine club members)
Cases Produced: 370 cases
Have you tried the Masia de la Vinya 2015 Syrah? How did the tasting notes compare with your experience? Leave a comment below.