2017 Morgan Winery, Syrah G17, Santa Lucia Highlands.
One of the best Syrah values out there is the dark fruit driven and savory toned Morgan G17, which is a blend of 90% Syrah, 5% Grenache, and uniquely 5% Tempranillo sourced mostly from the cool climate Santa Lucia Highlands along with minority of grapes from Arroyo Seco. The Syrah character shines through here and it reminds me somewhat of Saint-Cosme’s Syrah based Cotes-du-Rhone(s) though it is slightly richer and shows a warm ripeness of fruit led by boysenberry, damson plum, black raspberry and bright cherry layers along with crushed flowers, mineral tones, hints of sweet smoke, creme de cassis, pepper, cinnamon spiciness and sappy herbs. The acidity is lifting and tannins are lovely in their silky presence on the medium/full bodied palate and the finish is impressive for a wine in this price class, making this wine a bargain and one that highlights the quality at Morgan and savvy of the winemaking. I have long maintained that Syrah has eclipsed Pinot Noir in the sandy loamy soils of the SLH, anyone that has tasted the Lucia, Roar, Joyce, Sandlands, Cattleya and Morgan’s will see that.
Morgan’s latest set of wines from the 2017 and 2018 vintages are exceptional and while known for their outstanding Pinot Noir and Chardonnay offerings, especially their Cru set of single vineyard wines like the Rosella’s, Garys’ and the estate Double L, but under new winemaker Sam Smith, the whole lineup has really improved with wines like this one, along with their lesser known offerings including their Albarino, Grenache Blanc and the two outstanding Rieslings! This dark ruby/purple G17 Syrah expands as it gets air and gets more and more pleasing with every sip and more rewarding, especially with a robust meal and cuisine, going great with grilled meats, Zuni Cafe style chicken over bitter greens and or wild mushroom dishes. Aged for 10 months in French oak barrels, the G17 Syrah got just about 25% new, which does show in the wine’s luxurious and opulence with a nice toasty finish and creamy texture that doesn’t take away anything from the elegance and freshness of fruit, this is tasty stuff.
($25 Est.) 92 Points, grapelive