Wine Recommendation
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Wine Recommendation

Joseph Filippi Winery & Vineyards 2005 Pride of Cucamonga Syrah, Hofer Ranch (Cucamonga Valley)

Joseph Filippi Winery & Vineyards

2005 Pride of Cucamonga Syrah, Hofer Ranch
(Cucamonga Valley)

Syrah is the new Merlot. Not only is it as easy to pronounce as it is to love, versions are cropping up all over the state, some at refreshingly real, everyday prices.

World famous Hermitage and Côte Rôtie of France's northern Rhône Valley are typically powerful and expensive versions of this varietal, flavored with dark berry fruit, earth, smoke, and spice. Australian Shiraz ranges from light and fruity perhaps with a menthol spike to decadent and port-like and also from entry level to luxury pricing.

In California, shelves are crowded with dozens of unheard of new Napa and Sonoma versions starting upwards of $50. Thankfully, the more humble and less financially stressed folks in the Southern California AVA of Cucamonga Valley, including brothers Joseph “J.P.” and Gino Filippi, who recently celebrated their family’s 83rd anniversary in the wine business, offer high quality at well below market value.

Bright ruby with medium saturation of color, this expressive, complex, and juicy Syrah has notes of bramble, sage, cherry, plum, mulberry pie, menthol, char, and the inside of a walk-in cigar humidor. The oak influence is rather lavish but doesn’t overwhelm the fruit, and the finish is clean and tart, inviting another sip or bite of food.

Reviewed October 20, 2006 by Catherine Fallis.

The Wine

Winery: Joseph Filippi Winery & Vineyards
Vineyard: Hofer Ranch
Vintage: 2005
Wine: Pride of Cucamonga Syrah
Appellation: Cucamonga Valley
Grape: Syrah / Shiraz
Price: 750ml $22.00

Review Date: 10/20/2006

The Reviewer

Catherine Fallis

Founder and President of Planet Grape LLC, a company committed to bringing the joy of wine, food, and good living into the lives of everyday people, Catherine is creator of the “grape goddess guides to good living,” a series of books, television presentations, seminars, and e-learning programs. The fifth woman in the world to become a Master Sommelier, grape goddess Catherine Fallis is still very much down-to-earth.