Horsepower Vineyards

Horsepower Vineyards

High Contrast Vineyard Syrah 2018

This is a great quality Syrah from Washington State. Very stinky, in a good way. I had it blind and called it just by smelling it.

Harsh on the palate with black fruits, oak, spices, vanilla, peppercorn, wet leaves, earth, olives, mushrooms, vegetables, tobacco and espresso.

Full bodied and smooth with medium acidity. Very rich and extracted.

Dry and fruit forward with great complexity.

Thank you Barry for sharing.

Took 3 hours to open up, and it may not have been enough time.

Still extremely young and would be better in 5 years. Will age nicely in the next 25 years. A 95+ point wine in 10 years.

I paired it with heavy appetizers.

14.3% alcohol by volume.

93 points.

— 10 days ago

Severn, Eric and 26 others liked this
Scott Soren

Scott Soren

That beast is a little young

Horsepower Vineyards

Sur Echalas Vineyard Grenache 2014

Too heavy. Remarkable balance and structure, just too full-bodied for me. Steps all over food. — 4 months ago

Josh, RJ and 7 others liked this

Horsepower Vineyards

Sur Echalas Vineyard Syrah 2017

A load of barnyard funk here, in typical Christophe Baron fashion. A very young wine so I’m giving this the benefit of the doubt at this stage. Less bell pepper than I’ve experienced with Cayuse, but a similar smoked meat profile. Polarizing as others have stated, but I dig it. Happy New Year! — 7 months ago

Kimberly, Eric and 14 others liked this

Proper Wines

Syrah 2015

The poor man's Horsepower. Upon opening backend finish is off but settles with air and finds elegance and power balance. — a year ago

M. Chapoutier

l'Ermite Ermitage Syrah 2005

Shay A

Got to pop some special bottles when my good friend Shawn came in to town!

We thought it would be fun to open this alongside the Horsepower for a small an ‘05, this was shockingly young. Gorgeous aromatic display of dried red flowers, herbs de Provence, underripe blackberries, and a touch of iron. On the palate, it unfurled a bit towards the end of the evening, revealing black currant, raspberries, coffee beans, smoked meats and a tangy mineral driven finish. This needs another 5 years and at that point, this may start approaching triple digits. Thanks
@Shawn R .
— 2 years ago

Shawn R
with Shawn
Tom, Paul and 57 others liked this

Charles Smith

Royal City Washington Syrah 2013

Shay A

I’m between a 94 and 95 here. I think this is slightly better than the 2010 I opened two years ago in that this showed more classical funk and savory notes.

I gave this an hour of slow ox and then decanted another 2+hrs. At pop and pour, not very expressive. Even after the hour of being open in the bottle it made such a difference and then absolutely exploded in the decanter. Floral, violets, potpourri, herbal spice, stemmy underripe black fruits all on the nose. Gained a touch of Syrah funk the longer it was open but stayed more between the fruit and stem inclusion side instead of going full on iron/smoked meat. So much up front fruit on the palate before a wall of mineral hits and takes everything down the mid palate on a wild ride. Peppercorn crusted black cherries, dark red and black berries, underripe red plum and really nice acidity to give it a nervy type profile. Alongside the 2014 Horsepower Tribe Syrah, this was more a caged animal yet still retained a wild factor. Then again, most wines are tame compared to Horsepower (just give them time...I’ve experienced how incredible they can be with age)!
— 3 months ago

Arden, Jason and 35 others liked this
Jan A

Jan A

Had the 2008 last year, kept evolving and needed several hours. My last glass was the best
Bryan Kesting

Bryan Kesting Premium Badge

@Shay A : nice notes Shay. How much life do you feel this wine has?
Shay A

Shay A Influencer Badge Premium Badge

@Jason and Jennie : Would love to go there!

@Jan A : Haven’t had the 2008, but both the 2010 and 2013 certainly benefitted from extended decants, even though their profiles are a bit different.

@Bryan Kesting : Plenty! I’d say it’s likely hanging in this drinking window another 5+ years before the fruit starts fading more to the background and the required decant time drops closer to pop and pour.

Rene Rostaing

Ampodium Côte-Rôtie Syrah 2010

David T

For all of you that drink; SQN, Cayuse & Horsepower, if you haven’t tried a well aged Rostaing, you are missing the best aspect of Syrah.

Côte de Rôtie translates in English into Roasted Slope. That’s exactly what this wine defines.

The Ampodium is a blend of 7-8 different Rhône vineyards. 2010 a dynamic vintage in Northern Rhône.

I bought this recently at auction and it has been decently stored but not quite ideally stored.

The nose reveals; roasted chestnut, stewed; blackberries, black raspberries, black plum, raspberries, dark cherries, strawberries on the high nose & backend of the fruit, used coffee grounds, soft leather, dry tobacco, savory meats, dark, moist soils, anise to black licorice, fresh sage & bay leaf with candied; dark, red, blue, purple florals in a field of lavender.

The palate is; fresh, ripe, juicy, elegant and nicely resolved. The structure, tension, balance and length are perfect. It is for the palates that love elegance & beauty, not brawn & ABV. Roasted chestnut, stewed; blackberries, black raspberries, black plum, raspberries, dark cherries, juicy, ripe strawberries backend of the fruit, used coffee grounds, soft leather, dry tobacco, savory meats, smoke, dark, moist soils, anise to black licorice, light purple cola, fresh sage & bay leaf with candied; dark, red, blue, purple florals in a field of lavender. The acidity is round & stream like. The finish is in perfect balance, harmony that settled softy yet speaks volumes.

Paired with the Cardiff Chipotle Tri-tip. The best Tri-tip we’ve had. You can order at Not inexpensive though. The best never is!

Photos of; me in the La Landonne Vineyard, Rene Rostaing and our tour with Pierre Rostaing in their La Landonne Vineyard. What an afternoon!

Producer notes, Pierre (son of Rene & now Winemaker) uses up to 100% of the stems - believing they contribute to Côte Rôtie’s ineffable perfume. Macerations last from 7 to 20+ days, and the wines enjoy a long élevage in a mix of barrels and time-honored pièce for aging, so that no more than 15% of a given vintage sees new wood.
— 10 months ago

James Christina Champagne
with James and Christina
Paul, Shay and 28 others liked this
Vasanth Balakrishnan

Vasanth Balakrishnan

I love the challenge call out to cult Cali cab drinkers to explore Côte de Rôtie.
David T

David T Influencer Badge

@Jan A The hazard of multi-tasking late into the night and following conversation while writing notes. All better now.
Jan A

Jan A

@David T even more impressive that you can produce such detailed descriptions under those conditions 👍

Double Lucky

8 Red Blend 2017

Shay A

Finally got around to watching the Zoom tasting, and gave this about an hour and a half decant (though I did have a small pour at pop and didn’t notice too much of a difference at the end of the decant). I love all Bionic wines (Cayuse, No Girls, Horsepower, Hor Categorie, Champagne CB), so what a treat it was for them to send all members an inaugural bottle free of charge!

This is definitely more in the vein of No Girls, as expected. A blend of Grenache, Tempranillo and Syrah (percentages aren’t given as the blend will be different each year) from young vines, it seems mostly Grenache driven. Very approachable and bright with only a kiss of Cayuse funk. Blind, I think I could get the region right, but I’m not sure I could take it to Cayuse. Aromatically it has savory funk, iron, and classical green/herbal stemmy notes, but the palate reveals a grilled black cherry, black pepper crusted rhubarb, soft wine with an herb and black tea finish that shows more acidity than tannin. Definitely on the consume early side, but would hold easily for a couple years. Looking forward to the official release next year!
— 3 months ago

Jason, Jan and 33 others liked this
Jason and Jennie

Jason and Jennie Premium Badge

Cool looking forward to trying it

Chateau Montelena

Calistoga Zinfandel 2017

my review— it tastes great! a zinfandel with some horsepower. — 4 months ago

David liked this

Hors Categorie Vineyards

Syrah 2014

Shay A

Though not the same as it was pre-COVID -19, a handful of us were able to gather (while keeping our distance) to celebrate being back together and opened some fun wines to share. Wine is always better with good company.

A tour de force Syrah. Kudos to Christophe for not only the monumental effort here, but for also how it has its own profile away from Cayuse, Horsepower and No Girls. For me, this fell in between Cayuse and HP in the funk department, but it’s depth and concentration is unmatched. Pours dark in the glass with aromatics reminiscent of a bbq pit next to an herb garden. Teriyaki sauce, cherry smoked jerky, black currant, peppercorn crusted blackberries and classical funk. On the palate, it’s commanding with a vein of iron like savoriness down the middle, alongside licorice, potpourri, brambly dark fruits and herbs de Provence. We followed this out of the decanter for a few hours and it only got more powerful. Heck of a bottle, courtesy of
@Keith Fisher .
— a year ago

joe leatherwoodDan FitzgeraldBenjamin Keator
with joe, Dan and 2 others
Paul, Tom and 38 others liked this
Paul T- Huntington Beach

Paul T- Huntington Beach

On my list but not paying retail,
Shay A

Shay A Influencer Badge Premium Badge

@Arden Barnett : Yes, a true treat to try. One of the best domestic Syrahs I’ve tasted.