$36.00 per bottle / $388.80
$30.60 per bottle / $345.60 per
2011 DEWN Sparkling Syrah
One of the recurring themes at Bonny Doon Vineyard is the odd locus
at which we always seem to find ourselves—the intersection of the
terminally hip and the terminally unhip, and this is nowhere more
vividly exemplified than in the 2011 Sparkling Syrah (not Shiraz!).
At first blush, this is not an obvious wine for us. It’s so,
y’know, Antipodean… And yet, can we not also make the same claim
(of terminal hip/unhipness) for the denizens Doon Under themselves?
You have to hand it to a group of blokes—it had to be a bloke who
first dreamed this up—who turn a received wine style on its head,
and, y’know, just messed with it, throwing out all notions of
propriety. (I must confess to find this notion quite agreeable.)
How does one think about a sparkling red wine? You begin by first
fearing not the tannin—we picked a base wine that had wonderful
natural acidity but relatively low tannin. And then you come to
realize that CO2 or fizz as we know it, is a great amplifier of
aroma, indeed of everything. You love the aromas of Syrah, right?
Now, get ready to smell them REAL BIG.
You note the lurid deep, violaceous color. Don’t be afraid. It’s
crushed velours with a tantalizing playful effervescence that
you’ll soon be sipping. You get the typical quality of smoked meat
that one often finds in cool climate Syrah, but not so sauvage;
there are the more civilized elements of wintergreen and crushed
blackberries that offer cool comfort. Clearly, the still red wine
that you still remember has undergone some sort of magical
transformation. Grapefruit? Cassis? Perhaps some unnamed tropical
fruit with mysterious magical seeds, each one containing a yetto-
be fulfilled magical wish. Wait, it’s Necco wafers, yes, spearmint
Necco wafers, to be precise, with perhaps a hint of a refreshing
sarsaparilla. Yes, there’s definitely a candied quality to this
very elegant fizzy red wine—it’s candied violets (there is hardly
anything more elegant in the world).
In the mouth, it’s just plain fun. You can’t help but smile.
It’s like listening to your favorite piece of music transposed into
another style. The wine is clearly a Syrah, but rendered in a way
that is startlingly unexpected and just totally fun. Don’t stress
out about what to serve with this. Undoubtedly, there is some
extraordinary food combination that you or I will never figure out.
But use it as you would a Syrah table wine; I think with a leg of
lamb it would be brilliant. But perhaps also with a chocolate layer
Blend: 83% syrah, 17% grenache
Production: 378 cases
Appellation: Central Coast
Alcohol by Volume: 13.8%
Vineyards: 83% Jespersen, 17% Alta Loma
TA: 8.8 g/L
Serving Temperature: 53-55º F
Cellaring: Drinkable upon release (Feb. 2014), 0-7 years
is currently empty