Hello friends. Today we have the deeply seductive new vintage of one of the most popular Washington Syrahs we offer each year. Fortunately, we’re able to continue at the same pricing we’ve had for the past few vintages, down considerably from the $28 price point of vintages past:
2015 Owen Roe Syrah Ex Umbris
Our TPU price is as low a tag as I see nationally, and one we were only able to secure this year by committing to a sizeable parcel. Never a concern when it comes to this particular wine.
Whenever we offer Ex Umbris, I like to quote the inimitable Jon Marvin from Cavatappi. Jon represents Owen Roe locally, and he has a unique perspective on this wine, having worked at Pike & Western when the first vintage was released:
David was making some pretty cool Syrah back in the day, way before everyone and their grandmas were in the Syrah game in WA. In 2002 an incredible forest fire enveloped the vineyard where he was sourcing his Syrah, and the smoke and ash from the fire sunk into the valley and played a role in that vintage that we hadn’t really seen before. I remember when he came into Pike and Western to sell us the wine after it was bottled with a new label called “Ex Umbris” (from the shadows), and we all wondered what the hell we were going to do with this new release as it smelled like a camp fire on steroids. It sold like crazy and people kept coming back for more and more until it was all sold out.
The next year came along and of course everyone was clamoring for the next vintage of Ex Umbris, and many were disappointed that the intense smokey flavors and aromas weren’t there. It’s not like David wanted to create a fire around the vines to get that same effect, and none of us wanted that either. Fortunately over a few years time people realized that WA Syrah when done correctly often has smokey aromas naturally, and Ex Umbris has pretty much had a life of its own ever since. Of course David has fine tuned his craft even more over the last decade, he’s using vineyards that are more ideal for Syrah than what was available a dozen years ago, and his Syrah is better than ever.
As many of our list members who have accessed the past few vintages know, it’s true: this wine really is better than ever. The vineyard sources for the 2015 are a quartet of Yakima Valley all-stars: two estate sites (Union Gap and Outlook) plus DuBrul, plus Red Willow. Ridiculous sourcing for a Syrah at this price point, and all of it aged in neutral barrel for 16 months. Listed alc is 14.1%, and the nose opens with blackberry fruit, smoky ham hock, plum sauce, and smoldering charcoal. The smoky threads that this Syrah has become known for are present in force in 2015. The palate offers a just-right mix of fruit and non-fruit elements (earthy, savory), all on a rich, intense, openly delicious frame. 2015 was a warm year in Washington, and it seems clear that this vintage is going to be an early-drinking delight, offering untold pleasures, immediate-gratification-style.
First come first served up to 36 bottles, and the wine should arrive in a week or two, at which point it will be ready for pickup or shipping during the next temperature-appropriate shipping window.