While it’s natural for us to wax on about the Syrahs of California because we live and work here, we’re going to take International Syrah Day today as an opportunity to go back to Syrah’s roots in France.
The Syrah-based wines of France’s Northern Rhône Valley have long defined the heights to which this grape variety is capable of rising. Cornas is an all-Syrah growing sub-region of the Northern Rhône that has been enjoying an upswing in popularity lately. Passionate sommeliers across the US see much value in “soulful and earthy” Cornas, versus the generally more expensive wines of Hermitage and Côte-Rôtie, which are more famous, neighboring appellations in the Northern Rhône.
We have a bottle of Guillaume Gilles Cornas 2007 on our table right now. Guillaume is a newcomer. The deep, dark peppery 2007 is his first wine and is a raw, pure, rustic manifestation of Syrah. We’ll be browsing TasteSpotting for the perfect braised lamb or beef dish to balance its power tonight.
What are you drinking on International Syrah Day? We’d love to take a sip…