The Ojai Vineyard, Solomon Hills Vineyard Syrah, Santa Maria Valley, California, USA 2013
I’m not sure how a wine can take on the character of a psychological thriller, but this one has. The ‘unhinged’ – almost savage – energy of flavours in Ojai’s (pronounced ‘oh-hi’) Syrah is mesmerising: cedar, incense, spice and a deep, rich, red meatiness, like an oxtail stew that has simmered for hours. But as primordial as the aromas and flavours are, it’s the choreography – the way this wine dances and moves on the palate – that leaves you most impressed. Among wine industry insiders, Adam Tolmach, the owner and winemaker of the tiny Ojai Vineyard, is considered to be one of the best (if unsung) winemakers in California, and he certainly does have a flair for complex Syrah.
Price UK N/A UK www.ojaivineyard.com
Taster Karen MacNeil