• RP: 94

    Robert Parker Score

    94

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  • WA: 80

    Wine Advocate Score

    (89-91)

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Nexternal USD 85.00 750ml

Ojai Syrah Santa Barbara County Thompson Vineyard 2004

Winemaker's Notes:

The Thompson Syrahs have been some of the most difficult wines to understand because they are so big and blocky in their youth. It's telling that when we serve up a tasting of all the bottled vintages (1997 to 2005) the most compelling and complete wines are the 1997s and 1998s. The others are all terrific, but they also need more time to fully express themselves. That being said, we have been tweaking the style of this most age-worthy wine to gain some earlier accessibility. In 2002 we started blending a small amount of grenache with the Syrah to enhance the brooding aromatics of Thompson, and to give it a little more freshness on the palate. We did the same in 2003, and then in 2004 we blended substantial amounts of both Grenache and Mourvedre which transformed the Thompson into a more interesting and complex wine. This 2004 was hard as nails in the barrel, but extra barrel aging and an additional racking really softened its substantial tannins. While it's a wine that will continue to evolve for the next ten years, it shows beautifully today if decanted 24 hours in advance of tasting.

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The Ojai Vineyard:
The Ojai Vineyard, owned by Adam & Helen Tolmach, works closely with a dozen different vineyards on the Central Coast of California and produces wines from syrah, grenache, mourvedre, pinot noir, chardonnay, sauvignon blanc and viognier. About 6000 cases are produced each year, divided between 15 bottlings, most of which are vineyard designated wines. The key to producing special wine is in ... Read more
The Ojai Vineyard, owned by Adam & Helen Tolmach, works closely with a dozen different vineyards on the Central Coast of California and produces wines from syrah, grenache, mourvedre, pinot noir, chardonnay, sauvignon blanc and viognier. About 6000 cases are produced each year, divided between 15 bottlings, most of which are vineyard designated wines. The key to producing special wine is in the care taken growing the grapes. There is an inverse relationship between quantity and quality when it comes to grapes, so rather than purchasing ours by the ton, we have long term agreements with our growers to buy the fruit by the acre. This lets us culture the vines and thin the crop to our strict specifications, yet allows the grower to receive a fair return. In the winery we like to watch the development of the wine carefully, yet prefer to do as little as possible. Experience has shown us that the least amount of moving, pumping, fining and filtering is always best. The ultimate objective is to show off the distinctive character of a vineyard site. Read less

Member Reviews for Ojai Syrah Santa Barbara County Thompson Vineyard

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Snooth User: jasonkauf
32776948
3.50 5
03/05/2011

Almost too much of a good thing. Super velvety with loads of deep sour cherry.



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The Thompson Syrahs have been some of the most difficult wines to understand because they are so big and blocky in their youth. It's telling that when we serve up a tasting of all the bottled vintages (1997 to 2005) the most compelling and complete wines are the 1997s and 1998s. The others are all terrific, but they also need more time to fully express themselves. That being said, we have been tweaking the style of this most age-worthy wine to gain some earlier accessibility. In 2002 we started blending a small amount of grenache with the Syrah to enhance the brooding aromatics of Thompson, and to give it a little more freshness on the palate. We did the same in 2003, and then in 2004 we blended substantial amounts of both Grenache and Mourvedre which transformed the Thompson into a more interesting and complex wine. This 2004 was hard as nails in the barrel, but extra barrel aging and an additional racking really softened its substantial tannins. While it's a wine that will continue to evolve for the next ten years, it shows beautifully today if decanted 24 hours in advance of tasting.

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