What We Say 2005 Rhapsody³ Proprietors Reserve
If you are visiting us for the first time, Welcome! The Wine Spies feature one exceptional wine each day – and we only bring you wines that we ourselves seek out and love. Always, the wines are great. Sometimes greater than great, as is the case with today’s wine from Bourassa Vineyards.
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Mission Codename: Rhone Baby Rhone
Operative: Agent White
Objective: Return to Bourassa to try their Reserve Syrah
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Bourassa Vineyards
Wine Subject: 2005 Rhapsody³ Proprietors Reserve
Winemaker: Gary Galleron
There is no doubt Syrahs have become a favorite varietal of red wine drinkers since its introduction to California in the early 1970s. The Syrah grape is known to produce intense and robust wines that are dark in color, rich and chewy in texture and have a distinct spicy flavor.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Medium dark purple and garnet with dark edges and nice clarity and thick slow legs.
Smell – Medium intensity fruit including plums and blackberries and a hint of mocha that when it opens up evolves with a butterscotch aroma (think Werther’s Original).
Feel – Smooth, rich, full-bodied and slightly dry across the entire palate.
Taste – A great medium attack of fruit including sour cherries and juicy plums. As this wine breathes you are rewarded with layers of oak and earth, indicative of its terroir.
Finish – Very nice balanced finish that’s long and lingers with its fruit and cocoa flavors.
Conclusion – This Napa Valley Syrah achieves a perfect balance between the typical overly fruity California styles and the often times more elegant and smooth Rhone style. This wine can be enjoyed with a variety of foods including grilled meats, rich cheeses or even by itself.
Last month, while on a ‘side mission’ (HQ calls it ‘off the reservation’) I ran into the inside agent from Bourassa Vineyards. He insisting I try their Harmony³ Bordeaux blend and visit the winery, knowing full well my affinity for the French classic. His research was incomplete, however, I also love Rhone style wines, and given they produce a Syrah I was in luck.
I decided to keep on the Q.T. about my affinity for Syrah until I had a chance to taste the wine. I didn’t want to provide an opportunity to be compromised. Agent E raved about the wines on the long flight from Tequila back to Napa. Perhaps, he was still under a spell from the Agave nectar we had enjoyed, I sat quietly making mental notes.
Syrah is fast becoming a favorite varietal for California wines. The Rhone varietal grows strong in Santa Barbara, the Central Coast, Sonoma and Napa Valley where this wine hails from. The 2005 Rhapsody³ Proprietors Reserve is a quintessentially Californian in style and flavor. 2005 is an excellent year with solidly structured wines of great intensity and quality, and this wine is just that.
After tasting the wine, I now understand why Agent E loves it so…
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of Bourassa Vineyards can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
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About This Wine:
This Rhone varietal is a thick skinned grape that produces a vibrant magenta color n the glass. Rhapsody3 Syrah has a rich earthy aroma with blackberry, plum and sweet chocolate with exotic spices on the long smooth finish.
A beautiful dark ruby color with a nose that has intriguing earth tones, white pepper and plum essence. On the palette you will experience a dense velvet feel with a balance of black cherry, toasted oak with a lingering soulful finish.
19 months on New American and French Oak. Hand sorted and lightly pressed to extract the beautiful colors and flavors that are so prevalent in this fruit. ALC. 14.3%
With this wine, we have set our sight on excellence and are achieving our dream. Fine wine, great food, family and good friends; these are the things we all value, and there is so much joy in sharing the celebrations of life.
Bourassa Vineyards, the Essence of Paradise
Welcome to Bourassa Vineyards, one of Napa Valley’s most distinguished wineries. Bourassa Vineyards skillfully produces rich, complex blends and world class varietals from only the finest, self-maintained vineyards in Napa Valley. Born from a family tradition of winemaking with a passion for quality, our wines are hand-crafted in small lots to ensure unsurpassed excellence in every bottle. Our award-winning vintages display varietally correct balance paired with handcrafted passion.
The Bourassa tradition of winemaking started in 1899 in Naples, Italy with Victor Nozzolillo, Victor Bourassa’s grandfather. In 1910, he came to American by himself, greeted only by an older brother who also left Italy at a very young age. Nozzolillo fought in and survived WWI before settling down to raise a family.
On Shrewsbury Street in Worcester, MA in the early 1900’s, street-style farmers’ markets were the order of the day. Grapes from other states were on display on wooden boxes, ripe for home winemaking (most of which was done in the basement during Prohibition.) It was Victor Bourassa’s grandfather who provided him an inheritance of tradition as a winemaker. He instilled in Bourassa an eagerness to learn the ancient craft of winemaking.
On the other side of town, Bourassa’s other grandfather Joseph Bourassa, tended his entrepreneurial spirit by building a neighborhood grocery store from the ground up. He too planted a seed within Vic Bourassa to honor and build on tradition.
Many of Victor Bourassa’s memories provide confidence in seeking the knowledge in winemaking and entrepreneurship for his wine business today. Bourassa Vineyards is built on this strong family tradition in Napa Valley. Bourassa recognized the importance of these people who have touched his life. They have taught him to work hard, have integrity and always be optimistic in life. Thus the result is the fruition of Vic Bourassa’s lifelong dream to produce and sell wines that would make his grandfathers proud.
Appellation: Napa Valley
Special Designation: Napa Valley
Months in Barrel: 19 Months
Oak: French & American
Release Date: December 03, 2007