In my view Rhys is one of the most exciting wineries in the United States. Unlike the vanity-projects of many other Silicon Valley millionaires, owner Kevin Harvey is clearly dedicated to understanding wine and making a phenomenal, highly expressive product. The Chardonnays, Pinots, and Syrahs are all among the very best made in the U.S. Much of the reason is the scads of money Harvey put into researching the geology and perfecting vineyard management. There is a lot of data gathered, compared, and analyzed for each decision. For proof of Harvey’s obsessive adherence to analysis, see his Nebbiolo project Aeris in the Sonoma Mountains.
The Horseshoe vineyard is located on the Rhys estate property in the Santa Cruz Mountains. It is located on a ridge of sedimentary shale that is lightweight and brittle that provides for low vigor and significant drainage. The vineyard is planted with Pinot, Chard, and Syrah. The Syrah made from these vines is regularly one of the best I’ve had from California.
While the wine has powerful fruit, it is also clearly cut from balance, with classic meat, camphor, olive brine, and iron, alongside the blackberry fruit – much like a top Hermitage from a ripe vintage. Collectable wine hard to find off the mailing list – but a Syrah lover should attempt the treasure hunt.
Excellent to Excellent+
$79 USD from the winery mailing list