The streets of Mexico
2018 Cowhorn Reserve Viognier, 94 Points, $50, Editors’ Choice
This was a very fine vintage for the Applegate Valley, as this strikingly rich reserve demonstrates. Viognier is always a strong suit at Cowhorn, here showing lush aromas of lemon furniture polish and orange liqueur, then punching up ripe fruit flavors with a particular emphasis on candied apricot. There’s a suggestion of crème caramel also, and the richness continues through an extended finish.
2015 Cowhorn Reserve Syrah, 92 Points, $75, Cellar Selection
Cowhorn releases this reserve with ample bottle age, and it makes it immediately appealing. This is a potent, dark, deep, classic style of Syrah from what may be the least-known great region for Syrah on the entire West Coast. Aromas and flavors feature ripe figs, black cherries, espresso and dark chocolate. It’s well integrated and firm, with a compact core that promises further aging potential. Drink now through 2027.
Cowhorn 2018 Viognier, 92 Points, $40
Viognier is a strong suit at Cowhorn. This deftly mixes juicy citrus and ripe peach fruit, amped up on tart acidity. The texture and underlying minerality contribute further complexity, with terrific tension and balance through the finish.
2015 Cowhorn Syrah 53, 91 Points, $45
Tart but nicely ripened blueberry and marionberry flavors push forward, filling out the remarkably fresh and pure palate. There’s a light streak of compost from this biodynamically farmed estate, but the overall elegance of this Syrah is what elevates the finish with delicate, tea-flavored tannins. Drink now–2026.
Reviewed by Paul Gregutt
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