We have noticed many of our emails of late have focused on reds in the medium to light-bodied range. Well, I think it's time to “beef” things up a bit and give our palates something to savor, like domestic Syrah! The new releases, from “Mr. Rhone Ranger” himself Joey Tensley, are in stock and they are spectacular! This man has a magical touch with Rhone varietals down in Santa Barbara County, CA.
In 1998 Joey Tensley launched Tensley Wines with one hundred cases and one single goal – to start a well-priced, Syrah-driven brand that let the unique vineyards of Santa Barbara County speak for themselves.
Today, Tensley is a 5,000 case-a-year business with Syrah’s that have made the Wine Spectator’s Top 100 Wines of the Year several times, scored 99 points with Robert Parker, and won Food and Wine Magazine’s award for the “Top Syrah in America over $20.”
While Tensley and its reputation have continued to grow, Joey has stayed true to the philosophy he had from day one – make quality wine that is well priced and always, “get out of the way and let the vineyard speak for itself.”
Tensley Santa Barbara County Syrah 2018
Shelf Price $23.99
Sale Price $19.97
91-93 pts Wine Advocate
A finished barrel sample, the 2018 Syrah Santa Barbara County has a deep purple-black color and gregarious nose of gravel dust, cherry coulis, warm blueberries and loads of red fruit sparks with slowly opening nuances of cocoa, prosciutto and loads of exotic spices. It's full-bodied, dense and powerful, flooding the mouth with lush, ripe fruits and with a frame of firm, grainy tannins and great freshness, finishing very long. This is a beast!
90-93 pts Vinous
The 2018 Syrah (Santa Barbara County) is shaping up to be fabulous. I am not sure I have ever tasted a Tensley Syrah with this much energy and focus. Lavender, mint and spice meld into a core of blue/purplish fruit. Medium in body, nuanced and vibrant, the 2018 has so much to offer. I can't wait to taste it from bottle. The 2018 has all the makings of a real overachiever.
Tensley 'Colson Canyon' Santa Barbara County Syrah 2018
Shelf Price $45.99
Sale Price $38.97
96-98 pts Jeb Dunnuck
The deepest colored Syrah in the lineup, the 2018 Syrah Colson Canyon comes from a great vineyard located in the hills above the town of Los Olivos. Awesome notes of blackberries, toasted spice (there's some new oak in this wine), ground herbs, peppered meat, and earth all flow to a full-bodied, concentrated, deep, layered wine that has plenty of tannins, good acidity, and a huge finish. It's a magical Syrah from Tensely, and my money is on it being the finest to date.
94-96 pts Vinous
The 2018 Syrah Colson Canyon Vineyard is a flat-out gorgeous beauty. Vibrant, nuanced and beautifully delineated, the 2018 is an absolute stunner. Inky blue/purplish fruit, lavender, spice and menthol are all beautifully delineated. Brisk, nuanced and full of class, the 2018 is positively stellar, not to mention incredibly promising.