We all know *proprietary* is just another word for Syrah, so you can’t help but not go into it with that perspective. Inky ruby, rather staining and offering a chubby, round nose, flush with the sort of flowery concentration we have learned to expect in newly-crowned standouts of these regions. Dark berry blackness, sweet and rotund, ashy, smoky plumes of slightly-dank cherry rising off it. Marmalade and sarsaparilla work their way around the leathery folds, sharp dusty briar riding high.
Tasting it is likewise no giant surprise. I could have probably written this review without tasting it. Possibly without even smelling it. “OMG” I hear you gasp, “How dare you? We can never trust you again.” But that’s not the point–and no, I do not write reviews of un-opened bottles. The reality is: at some point these brands kinda run together in style. You are aware of them from incessant sponsored IG posts, you are vaguely cognizant of their scores and who makes them, the PP and packaging are a big hint, and… well… you pour it in a glass and BAM! there’s THAT wine. Again. The sweet smell of success in marketing to the lowest-common-denominator of wine-enthusiast.
Deep, brooding thick liqueur, grainy oak placement invigorating all, dryness masquerading as acid gradually producing tannin which feel contrived under all that syrupy berry and bluster. It’s not a bad wine! It’s just…. boring. Formulaic and basic, the yawns begin at the bland, rubenesque bouquet, gain momentum through all the wine-bro elements of back-slapping greatness on the palate, and are sealed by cherubic structure of 3-Bears quality: Not too big; Not too small; Just right. *high five* The concept of opening this bottle among savvy friends and receiving oohs & ahhs is nearly pornographic in contrivity, and yet: somewhere in Orange County, a version of that is happening right now. And tomorrow it will be on Instagram–with 1500 likes–claiming some fuck-tard gave this righteous juice 96 points and it’s worth every penny.
2017 WESTWOOD ‘Legend’ Cab/SY Sonoma Valley 14.8