2008 Long Shadows “Sequel” Syrah

Wine Enthusiast (Paul Gregutt): “($50); [REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 95pts.”

Review of Washington Wines (Rand Sealey): “($50); [REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 19.5/20pts.”

Those reviews were written in February 2012 and December 2011, and they drummed up plenty of interest, but we have all had to exercise patience, as Long Shadows plays by its own release schedule. But in the past week or two, 08 Sequel has arrived on the Seattle scene.

That release schedule is one of the alluring aspects of the Long Shadows portfolio. Most of the Syrahs I’m being tasted on these days are 2010 vintage, and I suspect I’m only weeks from being tasted on some 2011s. Getting to access a 2008, now four years past vintage, is a real treat. For my palate (generalizing here, of course), Washington Syrah is at its loveliest 4-8 years post-vintage, so for me, this is just entering its peak.

Winemaker John Duval (who built his reputation making the iconic Penfolds Grange in Australia) has his pick of Syrah lots from across the state, and in 2008 he chose a good chunk of Boushey Vineyard (wouldn’t you?!) and Bacchus Vineyard fruit, rounded out with grapes from Red Mountain and the Horse Heaven Hills. Duval has a finely-trained eye for balance, and it shows here. The aromatics are dark and smoky: charcoal-smoked meat, black fruit, and a deep, dark mocha nose give way to a palate that beautifully balances fruit, mineral, and meaty notes. Complex and delicious in turn.

First come first served up to 12 bottles, and the wines should arrive in about a week, at which point it will be available for pickup or shipping during the autumn shipping window.

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