Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar - November 2011

Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar - November 2011

2009 Écluse Zinfandel Lock Vineyard

Rating: 90 Points
Inky purple. Very sexy, perfumed aromas of black raspberry, smoky minerals and incense; showing a lot of aromatic character. Quite lively and juicy in the mouth, with sappy dark berry, cherry and candied floral flavors. The energetic finish features supple tannins that add shape and gentle grip.

2007 Écluse Syrah Lock Vineyard

Rating: 91 Points
Full ruby. Complex aromas of dried red cherry, blackberry and violet. Juicy black and blue fruit flavors are complemented by smoky herbal and licorice qualities and a kiss of vanillin oak. Fleshy and full-bodied syrah with very good depth and finishing sweetness. This appealing, open-knit wine is delicious right now.

2007 Écluse “Ensemble”

Rating: 90 Points
(50% cabernet sauvignon and 25% each petit verdot and merlot): Deep ruby. Powerful cherry and blackcurrant scents are complicated by alluring smoked meat and spice notes and a light suggestion of tarragon. Full, fleshy dark berry flavors are lifted by gentle acidity and supported by fine-grained but firm tannins. Gains sweetness on the finish, picking up an exotic hint of sweet, cured tobacco.

2009 Écluse Cabernet Sauvignon Lock Vineyard

Rating: 90 Points
Full ruby. Cherry-vanilla, clove and wood smoke on the fragrant nose. Lush and creamy in texture, offering deep dark fruit flavors and notes of candied flowers and herbs. Finishes with good clarity and echoing vanilla and floral notes. This sexy wine is surprisingly approachable now.

2009 Écluse Grenache

Rating: 90 Points
Vivid ruby. Sexy aromas of red berries, flowers and Asian spices, plus a hint of wood smoke. Supple, broad and sweet, with deep raspberry and cherry preserve flavors, silky tannins and very good clarity. Shows energetic finishing lift and length. Impressively elegant and precise for a New World Grenache.

2009 Écluse “Improv” Lock Vineyard

Rating: 89 Points
(59% syrah and 41% zinfandel): Deep ruby. Lively and focused on the nose, displaying fresh red fruit and floral scents and a slow-building licorice nuance. Sappy and expansive on the palate, offering bitter cherry, herb and floral pastille qualities. Shows good intensity on the spicy, dark fruit-dominated finish. This is drinking well right now but has the balance to age.

2009 Écluse Petite Sirah Sereno Vista Vineyard Paso Robles

Rating: 90 Points
Opaque violet color. Sexy, oak-spiced dark berries on the fragrant nose. Lush and seamless in texture, offering sappy blackberry and boysenberry flavors that pick up a smokiness with air. Shows a strong vanillin oak quality on the finish, which leaves sweet dark fruit preserve notes behind. Nothing shy here.

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