Popped open the 2001 K Vintners Cougar Hills Syrah the other night with friends. Talk about an older wine that thinks it's young. This is clearly one of those that just wants to stay a baby for a long time.
At age 15 you would think this wine would be well past middle age and in the more in the graceful elder status. Not so. The Cougar Hills Syrah was big, bright and full of fruit. It showed so much life that even in the decanter for an hour or more it was still a massive wine, showing lots of fruit, with gentle tannins that were nicely integrated into the wine. If anything, this wine made from Eastern Washington fruit, tasted so much like a Southern Rhone as it had the bones and structure of a Gigondas, Rastau, Sablet or Vacqueyras, with big bones and lots of long, elegant fruit. At the same time there's a bit of Cornas style and flavor happening too.
Layer upon layer of blueberries, black pepper, black plums, licorice and star anise dominate the wine, with a light brush of herbs.
The 2001 K VGintners Cougar Hills Syrah cost $44.95 back in the early 2000's. It's a treat to still have in the cellar and a wine that has time....if you can keep your hands off of it.