2014 Karlsen Syrah


2014 Karlsen – Syrah (Monterey, Ca)

100% Syrah


Clear – Deep ruby red with some violet


Fruit – Blue and Black Fruit (Ripe Plum and blueberry compote)

Non-Fruit Aromas – Spice, alcohol and Earth (pepper, wet topsoil and Canned Black Olive)


Entry – Medium mouthfeel. The entry transitions quickly but smoothly into the mid palate.

Mid palate – Accelerates quickly with tart blue fruit and big spice notes.

Finish – Long finish that fades evenly and gives way to less tart blue fruit, medium acidity and sharp grippy green tannins.

Wine Nerd Stuff

There are only 1000 bottles (83 cases) per vintage made of this Syrah and not every year. Owners/Winemakers Dan Karlsen and Matt Viotto are heavy hitters in the California wine game. They only choose to make wine during the years that the grapes turn out to be high quality due to Mother Nature and luck’s blessing. Due to their prior successes in the wine industry, they are able to make small batch boutique wine from their own vineyard in the mountains of Monterey and do it the way they want. Their idea was to make wine they want to drink and they pleased my taste as well. This wine really reminds me of Syrah from the Northern Rhone in France. This is really evident in the mid palate and finish. The wine is big with its medium to heavy spice notes, earth and tannin that are clearly the work horses in this one. This old-world style Syrah from California screams for a big meat dish with plenty of fat and flavor.

Drinkability (out of 5 glasses)

3 out of five

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Bone marrow with thinly sliced prime rib and white truffle mashed potatoes

by Josh Neimeyer
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