Grapelive: Wine of the Day November 25, 2017

2015 Drew Family Cellars, Syrah, Ornbaun, Mendocino Ridge.
A blend of two vineyards, both on silty clay and loam soils, west of Anderson Valley, one Valenti Ranch at 1,350 feet up, planted to McDowell and Cote-Rotie Clones is just 6 miles from the Ocean and the other Perli Vineyard, which sits at 2,400 feet, is planted to Chave Selections (Hermitage Clones) with a few vines also planted to Grenache and Mourvedre (which also make tiny appearances in this wine) the Drew Ornbaun is 94% Syrah with 3% Grenache and 3% Mourvedre, with 20% whole cluster, crafted by Jason and Molly Drew at Drew Family Cellars is one of the best values in California wine! More Hermitage in style full and expanding, rather than an edgy Cornas, with rich detail and wonderful powerful intensity, with a palate that explodes with blueberry compote, currant jelly as well as damson plum, boysenberry, sweet violets and kirsch as well as stylish peppercorns, cedar, incense, new leather/game and black licorice. This sexy concentrated, but lively balanced 13.4 % alcohol dark purple/garnet hued Syrah is just spectacular in performance, with northern Rhone charm and vitality, as I’ve been saying, Jason Drew is making some of the best wines in the state and again his 2014 and 2015 Syrah and Pinots are mind-blowing in quality and are all thrilling to behold, without question these are some of my favorite wines of the year if not all time! This Ornbaun Syrah named after the local soils and influence by the cool climate, all Mendocino Ridge labeled wines must be from vines grown within 12 miles of the Pacific Ocean and be at least 1,200 feet above sea level, giving the riveting vigor and vivid flavors that make these wines stand out and shine. Drew’s wines are in the same league as Peay, Littorai, Radio-Coteau, Anthill Farms, Hirsch and Pax/Wind Gap, they should not be missed, especially his Morning Dew Ranch Pinot, it’s a Grand Cru class wine! I just love the Syrah bottlings from Drew and while they still under the radar compared to the Pinots, this native ferment, no new wood Drew Orbaum, can’t be beat for the money, drink this 2015 over the next 3 to 5 years, though I wouldn’t be surprised if the window stretches to a decade or more, it’s outstanding!
($30 Est.) 94 Points, grapelive