Home > Tasting Notes and Wine Reviews > Two 2009 Syrahs From Tensley Wines

Two 2009 Syrahs From Tensley Wines


We have drunk several different Tensley wines from the 2006 and 2007 vintages.  The most recent was the 2007 Colson Canyon Syrah which I rather enjoyed and thought showed strong promise for development after several more years of age.  These 2009 selections seem very ripe and concentrated.  The base Syrah is quite drinkable and well priced.  The Colson Canyon Syrah is so powerful, in terms of flavor and not alcohol level, that it was hard to drink more than one glass per day.  That bugs me because I want to desire a wine.  I liked the 2007 so I will revisit the 2009 vintage in a couple of years to see what shakes out.  These wines are distributed by Bacchus Importers Ltd and are also available at MacArthur’s.  The base Santa Barbara County Syrah is available in the DC area for $18 and the Colson Canyon for $35. I would recommend buying the base Syrah as an introduction to Tensley Wines.  I am on the fence with the Colson Canyon.

2009 Tensley Wines, Syrah, Santa Barbara County
This wine is 100% Syrah sourced with 40% of the fruit sourced from Camp4, 40% Colson Canyon, and 20% Tierra Alta vineyards.  The nose is expressive with ample amounts of both sweet and ripe cherry and plum aromas.  In the mouth the full flavors also reveal some tart berries, barrel notes, and hints of perfume.  This is an assertive wine is attractively priced and if I were nitpicking, it is light on acidity.

2009 Tensley Wines, Syrah, Colson Canyon Vineyard, Santa Barbara County
This wine was aged in predominantly neutral oak.  This shows even more sweet and ripe fruit on the nose but with more complexity.  In the mouth the fruit has a powdery texture, shows interesting minerals, and gobs of concentrated flavors.  There are plum flavors and notes of sour red fruits not found in the base Syrah.  This is undeniably and unabashedly a modern Californian wine.  This barely budged after being open for two days and that is without using any Private Preserve.  I suspect this will develop at a glacial pace so I would stick this in the cellar for a number of years.

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