An Alien in California

Brilliant staining ruby with pink edges.  Intensely floral, egg white and cedar-box.  Pretty and round–but with an edge–licorice and cola but bow-rosin melding to a carmelized minerality curling on your tongue.  The earthiness has a dessert essence to it, and a bit of AL pops up.  This label’s Gamay offering kinda meh’d me, but this little bugger hits on a LOT of European levels, from Priorat all the way up to Côte Rôtie and even tip-toeing into Beaujolais.  Light and crisp and flirty, but a grounded elegance impossible to resist.  In the mouth an instantaneous rich roundness–full and spicy–showing great fruit integration with substantial tannin.  This is not a huge ripe tannic bomb, though!!  If you are fans of dense, massive, disgustingly ripe, huge thick chewy Syrahs:  THIS IS NOT A WINE FOR YOU.  Thin and peppery to a fault–I’m guessing low 14’s… 14-4?–but not lacking in any department.  Tiny burn at the end.  This is a great wine.  And nicely priced.

2012 MARTIAN RANCH Syrah Santa Barbara County 14-1

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