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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Moon Mountain Vineyard 2005 Estate Grown Syrah, Sonoma Valley

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“Stop the presses!” I only had the chance to say that a couple times during my journalistic career. Today perhaps it has been replaced by, “Stop the digital upload!” Regardless, I had to make just such a quick change of plans on my blog post for today.

I had a wine picked out to review and was mentally outlining the blog, but then I sat down to dinner and the Green Dragon changed my plans completely. Instead of a typical Monday dinner of leftovers or something equally uninspiring, my wife whipped up a beautiful dinner of lamb steaks paired with roasted red potatoes and homegrown Swiss chard – and mint jelly too.

She directed me to pick out an “awesome red” to go with the epicurean feast. Down to the cellar I went and returned with a bottle of Moon Mountain Vineyard 2005 Syrah. I had picked up several Moon Mountain bottles during an online closeout. I must say this was a steal at $12. We’ve loved the winery since tasting their Cab a few years ago.

The grapes come from the rugged hills on the Sonoma County side of Mt. Veeder – a beacon of California wine goodness. In the decanter the deep purple wine rippled with dark brown edges. In the glass there was a noticeable aroma of mountain brambles.

Moon Mt Plus 062413 015Wine is always better with a gourmet meal and tonight was a chart-topper. The Syrah was a perfect pairing (if I do say so myself!).

I’ve had some 2005 wines recently that had lost their liveliness and were on the downhill slide. Not so with this Syrah! It was alive and kicking, exemplifying the essence of Syrah with a robust taste of sour cherries, healthy tannins and earthy, roasted nuts. The finish is of medium duration that floods in with a rush of berries.

This is a superb Syrah with at least two more years of peak flavor. You can certainly sip it on its own, but I would call this a “foodie favorite” and pair it with a strongly flavored entrée like lamb, sausage or venison.

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Rating: 5 of 5  Value: 5 of 5

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