LL was traveling from point A to point B with a barbecue joint in between, so she stopped and picked up a couple of sandwiches and brought them home for lunch. We’re talking Memphis-style here: Pulled pork shoulder heaped on a bun with plenty of rich, dark, spicy sauce and piquant cole slaw.
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I opened a bottle of the Napa Cellars Syrah 2006, Napa Valley, and I’ll confess that if I had realized it was a limited edition wine, I would have tried something else, but I didn’t, so here it is.

It’s inky and minerally in every sense, and I mean that in a good way. Scents of smoke and ash, leather and wet fur, ripe blackberry and black currant burst from the glass; in other words, this feels like classic Rhone Valley syrah. The wine is substantial but not overbearing in the mouth, where tannins are smooth and polished, and oak — the wine matures 17 months in American oak, or is it French, the press materials say both on the same page, I mean three inches away, it seems more like French to me, I mean, I could be wrong, but let’s freakin’ get it right, folks, whadda they pay you for? — that could be back-pedaled a tad lends spicy support and structure. Deep black fruit flavors open to a core of intensely delineated potpourri, lavender, licorice and bitter chocolate, while bright acidity provides liveliness, and the finish takes on a bit of tannic austerity. This was terrific with the barbecue. Drink now through 2011 or ’12. Production was 250 cases. Excellent. About $34.

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