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Today's Wine:

2014 Tensley Syrah

2014 Tensley Syrah Santa Barbara, Central Coast


 
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Today's Wine Comments:
Cellarthief

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A kid with a dream from Bakersfield, California, Joey Tensley knew from the age of twelve that he wanted to become a winemaker. Matt Kettmann of Independent.com described him with, “[He] smiles through kinda crooked teeth, hangs with England’s roughest soccer hooligans, and swears like a pirate.” Not the profile you’d expect of a vintner who has been dubbed, “one of the rising superstars in California.”

Tensley worked his way up from a cellar rat at Fess Parker Winery in 1993 to the launch of his own label in 1998. This 2014 Tensley Santa Barbara Syrah has been harvested from the estate vineyard, a two-acre parcel behind Joey and Jennifer Tensley’s house. The first vine was planted by their son, Oliver, and the vineyard is personally tended by the family and their grower. In 2014, with maximum sun exposure, gently sloping sandy soil, and minimal water due to the California drought, the vines produced fewer clusters and smaller berries. With this harvest, Joey Tensley created a deeply extracted, complex wine. Wine Advocate awarded this well-structured Syrah 92 points, noting its brilliant notes of raspberries, cherries and blackberries and fine tannins. It an excellent choice for drinking today and will age beautifully through 2026.

Things to know
Tensley winery has a history of creating well-priced, quality wines. In 2008, Tensley Syrah made Wine Spectator’s Top 100 list and scored 99 points from Robert Parker. Joey Tensley is a consultant to vintners throughout the United States, as well as in Argentina, Chile, and France. Along with assistant winemaker Zac Wasserman, he produces wines for Carina Cellars and Ferguson Crest (a brand owned by Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas) at the Tensley winery.

The Tensley Vineyard Syrah is dark and intense with highlights of red plums and cherries nicely balanced by a subtle earthiness and firm, grainy tannins. We are very proud of the quality of this vintage and can't wait to see how the vines and the wine develop in the future. Drink this wine now or age it 7 to 10 years.

Tensley Wines is a family owned and operated winery focusing on vineyard designated Syrah within Santa Barbara County. Established in 1998, the first release of Tensley totaled just 100 cases. In 2006, our production reached 3,300 cases and included seven single-vineyard Syrahs, the most in Santa Barbara County. Though we've grown in size, our philosophy has never changed - source the best fruit possible and let the vineyard speak for itself.

Pair with lamb chops or a grilled ribeye topped with blue cheese. For something different, pair with Mexican food featuring pork or beef to match the wine's subtle smoky spiciness.

Wine Ratings

92 Points- Wine Advocate 

93 Insider Points

Wine Reviews

"Tasted as a barrel sample, the 2014 Syrah Santa Barbara is a sexy, sweetly fruited and voluptuous Syrah that offers up a rockin' bouquet of blueberry, blackberry, violets and pepper. It should drink nicely on release and over the following 5-6 years." - Wine Advocate 

The 2014 Syrah from Tensley is a huge and concentrated wine, bursting with juicy berries but with plenty of tension for balance.  Blueberry, blackberry, boysenberry and sour cherry all blend on the rich and layered palate, with a zippy acidity and firm structure adding lift and freshness.  A great example of what Tensley is doing to get all the attention from Robert Parker, this wine is all about dense fruit and a complexity that will peak your interest.  Enjoy now through 2022. - DZ Aug 2016

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