Rival Wine

2007 Paso Robles Syrah


California: Paso Robles

Offer Expired:Aug 30, 2011 at 11:59 pm
Avg. Price

What We Say


Today’s wine is a stunning wine at a stunning price. Well exceeding expectations, this Syrah delivers a drinking experience that goes well beyond its price class. If you love great Syrah, this is one that we encourage you not to miss.


2007 keeps on producing the hits, and today’s wine is solid gold. Keep an eye out for more from this fantastic California vintage, which Robert Parker awarded with a stellar 96 Points. This is his biggest score in more than a decade for an overall vintage.


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Mission Codename: One’s own potentialities

Operative: Agent Red

Objective: Return to our longtime friends at Hahn Family Wines, a winery whose Syrah we first fell in love with during a mission in early 2007. Procure their stunning 2007 Rival Syrah, from Paso Robles’ West Side.

Mission Status: Accomplished!

Current Winery: Hahn Family Wines

Wine Subject: 2007 Paso Robles West Side Syrah

Winemaker: Paul Clifton

*_Backgrounder*_: The popularity of Syrah is undeniable. Big and bold in flavor and texture, it packs a concentrated punch of flavor that many people love. This Rhone varietal, although many believe that the grape originated in the Persia region, is 100% French in lineage. The Syrah grape is directly descendant from the Monduese Blanche and Dureza varietals and is grown worldwide with great success. Today’s delightful Syrah is a big and bold delight with richly dark flavors, deep aromatics and a plush mouth feel. Read Agent Red’s tasting notes and mission report below

_Regional Backgrounder_: Paso Robles, located in California’s southern central coast region in San Luis Obisbo county is well known as one of the earliest regions where vines were grown in California with records indicating grapes have been harvested since the 1790s.

Wine Spies Tasting Profile:

Look – Dark purple, with an inky core of darkest purple. Color is deeply and evenly concentrated, from core to edge. When swirled, the wine coats the inside of the glass, gradually resolving into skinny, wine-stained, slow-moving tears.

Smell – Bold and dark, led by smoky blackberry, black cherry and dried violets. After getting a little air, the wine reveals earthy mushroom, smoked meats, sage, brown tobacco leaf, black pepper and a hint of leather.

Feel – Plush and full-bodied, this wine coats the mouth almost instantly, taking on a chewiness that gradually builds as dryness encroaches from the edges of the palate. Firm tannins and balanced acidity support the dark, concentrated flavors all the way through the long finish.

Taste – Concentrated and bold, with flavors of ripe blackberry, smoky boysenberry, black cherry, earthy bramble, dried dark flower petals, and soft spice. After some swirling, the wine reveals complex undertones of leather, black pepper and dried fall leaves.

Finish – Long and very flavorful, with dark fruit that lingers on and on, eventually yielding to earthy dried flowers, spice and earth.

Conclusion – A truly outstanding wine, this Syrah is a deliciously bold, fruit-driven and extracted wine that delivers a big experience – without being overpowering. This is a feat for many wines from Paso Robles, where flavors can be over-driven – for those that are accustomed to a more restrained style. Rich, complex and dark, this wine carries itself perfectly when sipped alone or paired with food. the 2007 vintage was such a superior year for California wines, and this Syrah lives up to the expectations we now have of the ’07 vintage! If you enjoy juicy, ripe, expressive Syrah, then this wine deserves a place on your table, and in your cellar.

Mission Report:

We are searching for the elusive Paul Clifton. We have no interview, today, but we’ll be certain to catch up with this busy winemaker the next time we feature another great Hahn Family wine.

Wine Spies Vineyard Check:

Paso Robles’ fabled West Side can be seen in this satellite photo.

What the Winery Says

About This Wine:

An Intense and sensuous wine, aromas of red ripe cherry and white pepper jump out of the glass subtly joined by hints of tobacco. Full mouth-feel with a deep purple hue.

The first sip reveals an explosion of strawberry jam and yet more cherries. A tarry, dark plum with cooked Rhubarb and coffee/chocolate on the back finish.

This is a great wine to pair with really flavorful, sauced meat dishes. Duck Confit being one of our favorites.

About The Winery:

Along California’s central coast lies the renowned Monterey County appellation and within that, the Santa Lucia Highlands, home to the Hahn Family’s vineyard estate. Nicolaus (“Nicky”) Hahn and his wife Gaby discovered a love for California wines in the mid-1970’s. A two-year search led them to the breathtaking beauty and ideal growing conditions of Monterey County where they subsequently purchased two ranches on which to plant vineyards and start a winery. Their first wines, released under the Smith & Hook label, received numerous awards and critical acclaim.

Technical Analysis:

Varietals: 90% Syrah, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon

TA: .66 g/100mL

pH: 3.88

Alc: 14.5%

RS: .28 g/100mL

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