The Cuvée presents with a shimmery violet hue, and initial aromas of spicy black fruits and gentle herb flower undertones. Medium grain but well integrated tannins and lively acidity help define a pleasing palate impression. As the wine aerates, an impressive array of berry fruit blooms in the glass and on the palate. This wine was blended to be an earlier expression of the 2015 harvest but it certainly will develop for years to come.
Vineyard and Winemaker’s notes
The 2015 Cuvée is, as it has been since 2012, a selection drawn entirely from our Estate vineyard production. It was a typical enough harvest in that we had four separate picks in our vineyard, and each of those lots were fermented and barreled down separately. In the Spring, after the wines go through their first Winter, we parse them in to two similar, but distinct blends. The goal is to assemble an earlier drinking wine (aka this Sonoma Coast Cuve´e) and a more structured cellar-worthy version (the Estate) that both echo the diverse topography and clonal variety of our Baker Lane home.
Winery: Baker Lane Vineyards
Owners: Owned and operated by Stephen Singer and Michel Boynton
Location: Sebastopol, California
Baker Lane Vineyards produces cool-climate, organically farmed Syrah, Pinot Noir, & Viognier from our home and farm in Sebastopol, California.
We are nestled in a modest but beautifully situated hidden valley west of the town of Sebastopol. The proximity to the Pacific Ocean offers cool, daily maritime breezes that provide optimal conditions for Syrah and Viognier—the vines we’ve planted at our estate – as well as Pinot Noir, which we grow at a vineyard just across the street. These qualities, among others, make our moderate Sonoma Coast appellation distinct. Although much of this valley is now planted in vines, tremendous biodiversity remains intact.
Our farm (called RoadsEnd Farm) supports not only grapes, but a diversity of other fruits, vegetables, and plant life. As our agricultural exploration has revealed, we’re not just growing plants, we’re growing flavor, specifically the flavor of this place. This recognition propels a commitment to winegrowing and winemaking that gains depth and nuance with each passing year. The land is teaching us a great deal, and we are willing learners. 2017 will mark our 13th year.
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I am a Lab Rat but Fed Ex has my wine. Of course I have the worst timing. We are potty training our 10 week old puppy and she had to go outside. So I ran to the door to take her out and of course, after taking her around the block, the dreaded slip was on my door. I will post my review as soon as the delivery happens and I can pour a glass.
First-time rat here. I have been slowly sipping on this Sonoma Syrah for the past three hours to see how it opens up. Like a typical syrah, it is opaque with a dark violet hue. At first taste after a pop and pour, it was heavy on the alcohol with a faint taste of white pepper. As it opened up, the alcohol faded and the fruit became more pronounced with some herbal notes (oregano & white pepper). Mouthfeel-wise it is thin on the palate without much structure. The finish leaves a peppery aftertaste. I am most surprised by the lack of tannins for a syrah this young.
I don’t see much cellaring potential with this bottle. It is definitely a drink now wine. I know it does not enhance the juice, but the label is a minimal masterpiece and catches the eye.
If this were at the store, I would probably pick it up if it was $15 or less. So, I think the value is there, but it is not a screaming must-buy deal.
I will follow up tomorrow to report on how it evolves overnight.
@kookie00 After an overnight in the bottle, I am not seeing much change. I am getting more of a berry and less of an herbal taste, but it has not evolved that much. Given the other rat report below, I’d agree that it needs a bit of time to open up, but will not benefit from an extended decant.
Lab Rat here. Finally got the logo to show. We had one glass not aerated and one glass later with aeration. This wine definitely benefits from breathing. First impression, tastes like tart cherries or Marionberries, good nose, not much depth to the smell. After drinking a little, it reminds me very much of a mash up between a good wine and huckleberry vodka made by Wild Roots (which I buy on a regular basis). This wine would be great with real vanilla ice cream. This would smooth out the tartness, which I like, but not everyone does. Not much depth so I don’t think it will age well, but it is a solid value, especially at the Casemates price. It is no Wellington, but few wines are. If you want a daily drinker, buy a case or two. Thanks Casemates for this wonderful opportunity!
Oh hell yeah! I’ve been waiting for this one for a while now. Ran out a few weeks ago. In for a case. Might spring for another. This is a big boy Syrah. Nice earthy nose. Smooth body. Don’t have my last notes handy. It’s well made. Always gets strong feedback at my wine summits. Cheers my friends!
@GatorFL I noticed that also… on the first day (maybe the first few hours) of the sale. I believe that everyone is just finally living their lives now that the temps are above 40 deg! I thought the Syrah sounded very good.
Hello from the late rat. I was across the country on business when i got the email, so scurry i did to try this as soon as reasonably possible.
On to the wine at hand: 2015 Baker Lane Sonoma Coast Cuvee. No listing of grape types on the bottle. Just a “cuvee”. So i’ll take the specs at the top of this page at their word.
This Cuvee is quite light on the nose with no noticeable alcohol hit. I get lots of cherry cola/floral/light smells. Maybe some light caramel as well. I like the color, which i would say is medium purple with good concentration.
Tasting for the first time i got a hit of eucalyptus, but that disappeared on subsequent tastes, for what it’s worth. Generally it’s a soft wine with good acid but not a lot of tannin. The part that blew me away was the finish — suuuuuper long. It just kept sitting there and tasting good for what seemed like a full minute.
Six months ago the SoCal gathering was syrah focused, and i could see this bottle sitting in that group. We had the Baker Lane Estate Syrah (previously offered), and i would say this Cuvee is a different breed. I’ll try this out with some food tonight to see if it’s hearty enough to compete, but as a stand alone it’s a good bottle.