Tamarack Cellars 2009 Ciel du Cheval Syrah, Red Mountain, $40
Red Mountain pioneer Jim Holmes produces fruit from two clones of Syrah — Clone 174 and Tablas Creek — for Walla Walla winemaker Danny Gordon, and the harvest was 90 percent complete when the mid-October “game over” freeze struck the Columbia Valley. Hints of dark plum, black cherry, earthiness and toast dominate the aromas. Inside, the palate brings chocolate-covered cherries and boysenberry acidity, which are framed by rich Red Mountain tannins that aren’t overwhelming. The drink includes a fascinating savory note of black truffle.
Production: 92 cases