Best Buy! Juan Muñoz Oca and his team in Paterson, Wash., took the 2011 vintage down a much different path than the year before. This bottling brings enough Syrah (75%) to be labeled as a single variety, while the 2010 vintage was dominated by Merlot (80%). The results of the Oct. 18 harvest show in the glass with a nose of dark plum, cherry and chocolate, backed by crushed walnut and dried oregano. On the pour, it’s a big, bold and focused drink of cherries and chocolate, a sign of the Merlot (25%). The structure of moderate tannins and nice acidity should make this a tasty complement to pepper steak, spicy lamb dishes, paté and assertive cheeses.
Production: 45,000 cases