2002 Sine Qua Non - Hedonist's Gazette - Dinner at Home, May 2007: Since several of my guests had never had the privilege of tasting a Sine Qua Non wine, we finished the meal with a mind-blowing effort from this Ventura County winery. The 2002 Syrah Heart Chorea, which is essentially the same cuvee as the 2002 Syrah Just For The Love Of It only aged significantly longer in barrel ( la Marcel Guigals single vineyard CTe RTies), was the best bottle I have ever had of this New World Syrah. We were astonished by it. Perhaps it had something to do with the change of pace after the other wines, but this effort boasted an extraordinary bouquet of flowers, chocolate, blackberries, and cassis. The spring flower garden aromas soared from the glass, and the wine was incredibly seamless. My recollection is that this wine spent 3+ years in small barrels, but the oak component is remarkably restrained and subtle as the wines fruit and personality dominate. A gorgeously full-bodied, opulent effort with a seemingly endless finish, it is one of the most memorable wines I have ever put in my mouth. It begged for a sensationally grilled steak. It will be interesting to see how long it will evolve and improve (at least 10-15 years), but given how little was made, it will be amazing if any bottles last that long. Wow What an extraordinary experience.
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