Two 2010s from Rasa

Hello friends. We covered the BDX section of Rasa’s autumn releases back in September (we’ll include reorder links for those below), and today we return with the Rhone section of the release, two Syrah-based wines that have developed devoted followings among our list members.

These bottles would make fine holiday gifts, as the higher end of the Rasa lineup can be very difficult to source outside of the winery itself. Fortunately, our list has grown up in tandem with the Naravane brothers’ project. We’ve all been enthusiastic supporters from the beginning (our first Rasa offer came just four months after Full Pull’s launch), and that has served us well as this project grows ever more culty.

2010 Rasa “QED”

QED is the wine that started it all, when we offered the 2007 vintage in February 2010. That offer contains much of the origin story for the Rasa project. That wine became hugely popular, and not just with our list members. Positive reviews poured in from Paul Gregutt, Sean Sullivan, Stephen Tanzer, et al, and a star was born.

Since then, we’ve offered every subsequent vintage of QED, and we’re not about to stop anytime soon. Especially with this 2010, which is a dynamo. Both Sean Sullivan and Jeb Dunnuck suggest that this is the strongest vintage of QED to date, and I’m inclined to agree. What a joy it is to taste Billo Naravane’s winemaking in a cool vintage!

In 2010 he cofermented Les Collines Syrah and Viognier, then blended in a few other Syrah sites (Seven Hills, Bacchus) and small proportions of Grenache and Mourvedre. The result is a knockout, showing all of Les Collines’ savory aromatic complexity, its alluring mix of beef stock, pine cone, forest floor, and a real wildness, a sauvage character, to the fruit. Pretty and funky in turn, this delights in its savory bacon-fat character, its white-flower notes from the Viognier coferment, and above all, its seamless, classy texture.

Washington Wine Report (Sean Sullivan): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. Rating: ***** (Exceptional).”

Wine Advocate (Jeb Dunnuck): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 93pts.”

International Wine Cellar (Stephen Tanzer): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 93pts.”

2010 Rasa “Principia” Reserve Syrah

Rasa’s reserve Syrah, this is produced in much smaller quantity than the QED (just 120 cases). 100% Syrah, it comes from Les Collines and Seven Hills in the Walla Walla Valley. Half is fermented with indigenous yeasts, and it gets a bit more time in barrel (28 months, versus 24 months for QED), of which the proportion of new wood is 25%.

I was wild about the nose on this, which presented a deep marine funk, seaweed and other brackish notes to go along with an overall very dark aromatic profile with tarry streaks and black olives and black fruit and smoky charred meat. This is a black-hearted Syrah indeed, sultry and exotic in the mouth, with depth and length to spare. The finish goes on as long as you decide to take between sips.

Washington Wine Report (Sean Sullivan): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. Rating: ***** (Exceptional).”

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

Wine Advocate (Jeb Dunnuck): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 93pts.”

Please limit order requests to 12 bottles of each wine, and we’ll do our best to fulfill all requests. The wines should arrive in a week or two, at which point they will be ready for pickup or shipping during the next temperature-appropriate shipping window.

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