Wednesday, February 16, 2011

International Syrah Day: Cameron Hughes Lot 156 2007 Syrah Mendocino County

A live blogging report for International Syrah Day. There’s still time this evening to sample a Syrah on this special day. Send your report on your Syrah tasting to our Facebook page or to

We popped the cork on Cameron Hughes Lot 156 tonight. There’s a bit of mystery about Cameron Hughes. He sells small lot ultra-premium wines he purchases from top-tier wineries around the world at a value price. The wineries he buys from are strictly confidential, but there are tales of buys from “cult” California wineries that are sold at incredibly low prices under his own label.

This baby was aerated and decanted to allow it to open up. There is a beautiful, earthy aroma. The tannins come on strong in a mouth-puckering entrance that was accentuated with red, juicy berries.
Green Dragon dialed in her impressions of Allspice, mushrooms and earthiness. There was a strong smoky characteristic of charred oak as well. The finish is vibrant. I remarked that the wine tended to smooth out (or maybe it was just me) with the second glass but Green Dragon said she didn’t get any of the smoothness.

Overall, an enjoyable vino, but if the oakiness were dialed down a bit the natural star qualities of the Syrah would better shine through.
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