Region: Temecula Valley, CA
Winemaker: Marshall Stuart
Grapes: 95% syrah, 5% petite sirah
With a change of the musical note on the label, this red is the first entry into Lorimar’s line-up that is a Temecula Valley-designate wine. So we now can get a glimpse into Temecula’s real parallels with the Rhône Valley and the syrah here is very promising. This wine was gigantic – like a French syrah on steroids in the WWF arena, but for a lot of American consumers this is what syrah is meant to be. It’s big, masculine, peppery, high in alcohol and designed for spice-crusted steaks on the grill. Again, the alcohol in a warm climate like Temecula gets dangerously high – I like my syrahs under 15% whenever possible, apologies to the Aussies. This is well-made wine under $50 that is a serious contender in the syrah category. Thinking Temecula would do well to focus on these types of Rhône bottlings moving ahead.