Full Pull Standard Bearer

Hello friends. A little history today. We first offered a Gramercy Cellars Syrah in June 2010. It was the 2007 vintage of Lagniappe, and here is some of what I wrote in the intro:

Greg Harrington is one of the faces of the reactionary Syrah movement in the Walla Walla Valley. This is a movement away from alcohol and new wood, and towards natural acid and earth. In the past few years, Gramercy has been churning out vibrant, sleek, stinky Syrahs with alcohols in the 13% range. And heads have turned. Some things that Greg does differently with Syrah: he considers it a delicate grape; one that should be treated more like Pinot Noir than like Cabernet. He embraces whole cluster fermentation, including stems for their earthy aromatics, their mid-palate body, and their lick of tannins. And he picks early, obsessing much more over acid development than sugar. In short, the man is a Côte Rotie-head, and it must have been a massive compliment to have Jancis Robinson call one of Greg’s Syrahs “not so unlike a really ripe Côte Rotie.” (As a frame of reference, many Côte Roties come in at 11-12% alcohol, so by Rotie standards, 13.5% is “really ripe”). Fruit-and-barrel Syrah lovers beware: these wines are not for you. But for those of us who love dirt and acid, meat and funk, these are among the finest examples our state has to offer.

In the six years since, Gramercy’s house style has been deeply influential across the state. These days, it’s not unusual at all to see Washington Syrah with a high proportion of whole clusters, with bright acidity, with low alcohol. It’s easy to forget how revolutionary this all was just a few years ago.

And Greg’s wines, in conjunction with the estimable Brandon Moss? They’ve only gotten better and better. Better vineyard sources. Wines even more expressive of those sources. At this point Gramercy has evolved to a point where they’re no longer a young whippersnapper. If I had to pick a phrase to describe their role in Washington wine: standard bearer.

Especially when it comes to Syrah, and that is our focus today. We have a trio of Gramercy’s finest Syrahs, and then I’ll tack on one Cabernet, because we’ve been receiving a lot of requests for that one.

2013 Gramercy Cellars Syrah The Deuce
This was one of the wines Greg poured at our event last November, and despite the fact that it was being poured next to several glimmering library bottles, it still shone bright and was purchased in quantity. For those of you who didn’t have a chance to access the wine in November, here’s your opportunity.

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

And here are Greg Harrington’s tasting notes: [TEXT WITHHELD]?

2013 Gramercy Cellars Syrah Lagniappe
Lagniappe is rapidly becoming Greg and Brandon’s showcase for Red Willow Vineyard Syrah. The 2012 was two-thirds Red Willow; this 2013 is 80%. It’s fascinating seeing this site through the Gramercy prism.

Here are Greg’s notes: [TEXT WITHHELD].

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

2013 Gramercy Cellars Syrah Forgotten Hills Vineyard
[Please note: this will be the most tightly allocated of the three wines, and we’ll only get one shot at it. The entire Seattle allocation is miniscule for this wine.]

Well, here’s an exciting debut wine. Forgotten Hills Vineyard is now an estate site for Gramercy, which is wonderful news. Long-time list members know about my obsession with Forgotten Hills. The old Waters wines from this site (2007 and 2009 especially) are some of the most exciting Syrahs ever bottled from Washington. Bar none. Turns out I wasn’t the only obsessive. Here’s Greg:


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

2012 Gramercy Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon Columbia Valley
A beautiful Cabernet from a beautiful vintage, and it’s interesting reading the winery’s notes on this one. It seems they’ve settled on a similar Cabernet pattern to the wonderful Woodward Canyon Old Vines bottling: blend old-vine Sagemoor fruit with powerhouse Cab from Horse Heaven (for Woodward, Champoux; for Gramercy, Phinny Hill). It is indeed one hell of a combination.

Greg’s notes: [TEXT WITHHELD].

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

Please limit order requests to 24 bottles total (mix and match as you like), 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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