2018 Sine Qua Non Grenache Profuga- USA, California, Central Coast (5/25/2021)
Pop, decant and pour on the back deck with two clients, smoked brisket, homemade sourdough bread and a hot spinach artichoke dip appetizer. The first thought that popped into my mind was Rayas. No, not as smooth as the 1999 Rayas that I had a few years ago, but the flavor profile was very similar. Smooth Grenache raspberry filled the front and side of the palate, with spicy pepper at the back. It still had some roughness from youth and some of the others thought the alcohol was a bit too prominent, but an outstanding effort with exceptional quality and winemaking. This ranks up there with my two favorite Grenache wines, the 1999 Rayas and the 2006 Aquillon. The good news is that I have more of this. The bad news is that I am unlikely to save any of it until it has 15 to 20 years of age on it. (96 pts.)
The whole setup - deck, food, wine - sounds pretty good to me. I have learned that my tastes generally prefer the Syrah over the Grenache earlier in the aging curve with SQN. I’m using the Syrah as buffers to let the Grenaches age out a bit to soften that finish. It’s curious to me since from other producers/parts of the world, I almost always flip the preference on age and consumption when it comes to Grenache and Syrah.
I am the opposite. When young, I prefer the Grenache to the Syrah. The syrah has more power and he grenache has more finesse, and I think the finesse shows better that the power when young, although both are probably better with age. My oldest ones are from 2009, which I have not had since soon after release. Come to think of it, maybe it is time to look in on the This is not an Exit 2009 syrah.