Wine Recommendation
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Wine Recommendation

Wine:Domaine Berrien Cellars 2005 Syrah, Estate (Lake Michigan Shore)

Domaine Berrien Cellars

2005 Syrah, Estate
(Lake Michigan Shore)

In 1992, the late Tom Fricke (whose daughter Katie and her husband Wally Maurer own Domaine Berrien Cellars in the Lake Michigan Shore AVA) made a bold move and planted Marsanne in his vineyard. It did well. In 1995, Fricke planted Roussanne and Viognier and began to realize that he had a unique microclimate well-suited to Northern Rhone varieties.

In 1999, Fricke planted Syrah to complete a Northern Rhone varietal selection for his vineyard which supplies the grapes for Domaine Berrien Cellars.

We consider the Syrah planting a success and well-proven by the 2005 Domaine Berrien Cellars Syrah. Ten years ago, many growers thought Syrah was not viable for Michigan's frigid winters and shorter growing season overall. Syrah may not do as well every year, but 2005 was one of the best vintages ever in all four of Michigan's AVAs.

From the first sniff, one can tell that this wine is Syrah. Complex blackberry, black cherry, black raspberry and black currant aromas spiked with vanilla and brown spice transfer to similar flavors on the palate. As the wine evolves in a glass, smoked meat notes develop. A solid fruit core, well-structured tannins with a balanced oak imprint make this a memorable regionally-styled Syrah.

Reviewed February 28, 2007 by Eleanor & Ray Heald.

The Wine

Winery: Domaine Berrien Cellars
Vineyard: Estate
Vintage: 2005
Wine: Syrah
Appellation: Lake Michigan Shore
Grape: Syrah / Shiraz
Price: 750ml $35.00

Review Date: 2/28/2007

The Reviewer

Eleanor & Ray Heald

The Healds have been writing about wine since 1978 and have focused on appellation significance in many of their world beat writings. They value recognizing site personality (terroir) within an appellation's wines. They praise balance and elegance in wines styled to pair well with food and eschew over-extraction, high alcohol and heavy-handed oak. “Delicious” is their favorite descriptor for a great, well-made wine.