Sur Echalas Vineyard Syrah | Horsepower Vineyards Horsepower Vineyards - Pure Wines from the Walla Walla Valley
A bottle of Sur Echalas Vineyard Syrah

Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

Produced: 2012-present

Professional reviews and tasting notes from prior vintages added as published. Scores within parentheses indicate barrel samples:

2021 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

100 Points

You are going to be completely enamored by the 2021 Sur Echalas Vineyard Syrah which is one of the great wines made in this warm vintage ... The nose is massively complex from white truffle shavings, tar, black licorice candy, wet rocks, Umami and potpourri notes that mingle well with parma ham tones. On the mouth this beauty effortlessly glides throughout the drinking experience. The palate is soft, round and generous with a sensational sense of texture, weight and viscosity, yet is light on its feet with serious tension and salty/stony nuances. This has to be up there... as the finest Sur Echalas Syrah ever made. Heady and intense, this is drinking beautifully now and will surely live on for another decade. —Owen Bargreen, owenbargreen.com

99 Points

... A 100% Syrah masterpiece ... brooding deep blue-purple core with a light purple rim in the glass, this is a stunning example of Syrah with a intricate nose of black-peppered charcuteries, toasted anise, brown mushrooms, dried blue and purple flower petals, combined with a mélange of blue and black fruits. Sweet, smooth tannins and crunchy acidity it’s a wine that you will remember drinking for years after you experience it. It’s that good. Highly recommended. —Jeremy Young, International Wine Report

98 points Cellar Stocker

Vines at this vineyard are planted at high density ... One sniff and there’s no mistaking where and who this wine comes from. The aromas explode from the glass, with notes of soot, black olive tapenade, potpourri, dark roasted coffee bean, white pepper, and generous amounts of smoked meat. The palate is soft, sultry, and intensely flavorful while retaining grace and precision. A long, long savory-filled finish caps it off. It’s nothing short of an accomplishment of a wine. —Sean Sullivan, Northwest Wine Report

97 Points

What a wild syrah, with such intensity on the nose. Bacon fat, ashtray, black pepper, black olives, celeriac and cumin. So smoky and delicious, it packs a punch while remaining fresh and poised, with a medium to full body. Long and attention-grabbing. Almost 80% whole clusters. From biodynamically grown grapes. Fantastic to try now, but best from 2027. —James Suckling, jamessuckling.com

96 Points

The acidity involved here makes every sip of wine feel like the crackling snap of a cold piece of celery. The wine's huckleberry-pie, fennel and cinnamon aromas are no slouch, either. I could stop here and be happy. The vibrating palate shows off flavors of boysenberries, plums and black pepper, with a trace of molasses. —Michael Alberty, Wine Enthusiast

 

2020 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

99 Points, Editor's Choice

Another impeccable wine from Horsepower, this 100% Syrah is aged for 18 months in all neutral oak to let the sense of place and terroir shine through. It’s my favorite from the line-up and sports an eye-popping deep blue and purple core with a lovely neon purple rim in the glass. Boastful aromas of spiced boysenberry, dried blueberries, freshly cooked bacon, black-peppered charcuterie, umami, and crushed stones pop on the nose. Meaty on the palate, with a secondary hit of iodine, blue plum, and crushed herbs creates an interesting tension in the wine. It jumps back and forth between a fruit-focused and a meat/spice-focused Syrah. Perfect levels of acidity are perfectly balanced with the smooth and present tannins. The dried pink grapefruit zest on the finish is a perfect final touch. 354 cases made. Highly recommended and Editor’s Choice. —Jeremy Young, International Wine Report

99 Points

… compelling aromas of bacon fat, white pepper dusted charcuterie, black truffle crudo and wafts of scorched earth all grace the nose. The palate is seamlessly textured, as this takes on a very Hermitage character with its bull’s blood, orange rind, ripe red currant and flinty profile. Give this more air and it becomes more salty and savory with nori and umami notes adding to the incredible flavor complexity. Dense and fat on the mouth, this is very gratifying Syrah to consume now and over the next ten years. —Owen Bargreen, owenbargreen.com

96 Points

Blackberry pie, fresh ginger and grilled ribeye aromas come first, followed by an earthy note similar to muddy gumboots that have just come in from the garden. The wine's blackberry jam, apricot, oregano and sage flavors are as earthy as they are fruity. Take a walk on the wild side. —Michael Alberty, Wine Enthusiast

96 Points

Dark and inward, the 2020 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard opens with crushed ashen stones and air-dried meats accentuated by olive and scorched earth. This is deeply textural, round and soothing, with ripe red and black fruits complicated by a core of salty minerals. Juicy acidity adds a liveliness to the finish, as the 2020 tapers off remarkably fresh, unexpectedly so, leaving an inner rose and a salty flourish to linger. Wow, the balance here is simply gorgeous. —Eric Guido, Vinous

95 Points

Smoky red and black fruits, iodine, peppery herbs, cold fireplace, and damp earth notes all emerge from the 2020 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard, a medium to full-bodied, nicely concentrated, layered, textured Syrah with tons to love. The tannins are ripe and nicely integrated, and it has a good spine of acidity as well as a great finish.—Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com

95 Points

This shows notes of crushed dark berry, dark licorice, leather, tobacco leaf and moist earth. Medium- to full-bodied with a round texture and supple tannins. Lingering and sleek with melted dark fruit, yet with fresh spiciness to it. Balanced and well-integrated. From biodynamically grown grapes. Try from 2025. —James Suckling, jamessuckling.com


2019 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

99 Points

...a masterpiece in the making. On the nose, it takes on white pepper and black olive tapenade alongside hoisin sauce, dark truffle, boysenberry, creosote and seaweed tones that all meld in the glass... Fresh and vibrant with silky tannins and wonderful length. This is a beautiful wine that flirts with perfection. It will enjoy another 10-15 years in the cellar. —Owen Bargreen, vinous.com

96 Points

The 2019 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard is fantastic with aromas of salami, cured meat and dusty leather before showcasing a sanguine and dark red berry essence. Medium to full-bodied, notions of smoked peat moss sway with a fleshy but firm mouthfeel before displaying a delicate mineral tension across the mid-palate with a tannic edge. The wine glides to a persistent finish that will remain food-friendly for years to come. Give it one more year in bottle and drink over the next 12 to 14 years. —Anthony Mueller, The Wine Advocate

96 Points

Leading off the three Syrahs, the 2019 Sur Echalas Syrah reveals a ruby/plum hue to go with a beautiful perfume of darker cherry and black raspberry-like fruits as well as smoked earth, shitake mushroom, iron, and exotic, floral and bloody nuances. This is one feral, exotic, incredibly complex Syrah that stills bring beautiful fruit, medium to full-bodied richness, ultra-fine tannins, and a great finish. It needs a solid hour in a decanter if drinking any time soon and will have two decades of longevity, if not more. This is the most perfumed and delicate of the three Syrahs. —Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com

95 Points

Give this a second to breath. A meaty nose of coppa, paprika, fennel and black cherry. Full-bodied with silky tannins. Bright flavors of dried berries and roses on the palate with plenty of spice. Great balance and intensity that leaves a lingering hum on the palate. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink or hold. —James Suckling, jamessuckling.com

94 Points

This distinctive red is structured and expressive, with blackberry, black olive, wild game and white pepper flavors that build detail and richness toward savory tannins. Drink now through 2031. —Tim Fish, Wine Spectator


2018 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

98 Points

...immediate appeal with its downright intoxicating bouquet, delivering loads of white pepper woven together with steak tartare, cigar ash tones as well as Hoisin sauce, Umami and menthol that all meld in the glass... The textural elements of the wine are just gorgeous... Rich ripe dark cherry and dark raspberry tones mingle with wet stone, seaweed, green olive tapenade, and salted meats on the palate... Gratifying to enjoy in its youth, this sensational wine will cellar well over the next eight to ten years. —Owen Bargreen, owenbargreen.com

97 Points

The aromas jump from the glass, with laser-focused notes of funk, firepit, peat, black olive tapenade, Stargazer lily, crushed flower and wet rock. The palate is full in feel, rich and intense, loaded with fruit and savory flavors that extend on a potpourri- and olive-brine-filled finish. It's outrageous in its appeal, a nearly overwhelming expression of this region. —Sean Sullivan, Wine Enthusiast

95 Points

A smoky nose with notes of blackberries, plums, violet and spices. It’s full-bodied with sleek tannins. Creamy and smoky on the palate with a velvety texture. Layered and structured with a core of black fruit and a savory finish. Tea-like with spiced meat. Gorgeous now, but better in 2023. —James Suckling, jamessuckling.com

95 Points

Brooding in the glass, the 2018 Sur Echalas Syrah opens to aromas of spiced blackberry compote, wilted lavender and rose petals with elements of sweet red peppercorn, baked earth and spiced cherry compote. Medium to full-bodied, the Syrah displays impressive balance and a luscious mouthfeel, offering flavors of umami, blackberry reduction and dusty plum with a delightful mineral essence and lifting tannins. The long finish evolves over a few moments and slowly unravels to reveal its complexities, allowing you to contemplate the magic that has been captured in the bottle. —Anthony Mueller, The Wine Advocate

95 Points

All Syrah from a site in the Rocks region of Walla Walla, beautiful red and blackcurrant fruits as well as scorched earth, mushroom, iron, bacon fat, and autumn forest floor emerge from the 2018 Sur Echalas Syrah. These notes carry to a medium to full-bodied Syrah with a round, layered mouthfeel, ripe yet building tannins, and a great finish. A primordial Syrah that needs at least 4-5 years of bottle age, it should have a solid two decades or more of overall longevity. If drinking any time soon, there's lots of trapped CO2, so don't be afraid to give it a healthy decant. —Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com

94 Points

Generous black cherry and smoky bacon aromas pair with refined and focused stony mineral and black olive flavors, finishing with fine-grained tannins. Drink now through 2030. —Tim Fish, Wine Spectator


2017 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

98 Points

Stony, complex and utterly sensational, the 2017 Horsepower vineyards ‘Sur Echalas Vineyard’ Syrah borders on perfection. It is not surprising that this shows a darker aromatic profile than the Grenache with wild blackberry compote, smoked brisket, creosote and Kalamata olive tapenade that all march in unison. The palate is fresh, vibrant and full of mouth-watering acidity. Umami tones are woven together with menthol, charcuterie, smoldering stones and Hoisin sauce. With a seamless texture, good sense of richness, yet very elegant, the 2017 ‘Sur Echalas Vineyard’ Syrah is impossible to resist in its youth but will cellar well for at least another decade. —Owen Bargreen, owenbargreen.com

96 Points

Intensely dark in color with a purple edge, the 2017 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard wafts from the glass with aromas of ripe blackberries and plums compounded by elegant tones of smoked strawberry and black cherry, followed by a spicy and mineral edge. Elements of hung meat and black pepper flutter effortlessly with perfumed resinous purple flowers. Like a welterweight champ, the wine is medium-bodied and chock-full of dark berry tones, with a velvety texture and harmoniously generous expression that packs a serious punch with a smaller frame. The mid-palate explodes with power and finesse, revealing layers of complexity, a rich mouthfeel and energetic acidity that frames the supporting tannins. The wine slides into a long-winding finish that continues to evolve for more than a minute after the wine has left the palate. Currently, production stands at 300 cases and is nothing short of impressive. If you can find it, buy it! —Anthony Mueller, The Wine Advocate

96 Points

…This beauty is just about overflowing with dark, meaty plum and blackberry fruits intermixed with lots of mulch, bacon fat, violets, and leafy herbs aromas and flavors. Rich, medium to full-bodied and textured, its core of sweet fruit emerges with time in the glass, and it has ripe, polished tannins, no hard edges, and a great finish… —Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com

94 Points

Decadent aromas of berries and spices with notes of smoked and grilled meat. Full body. Round, velvety tannins and a long, flavorful finish. Shows plenty of richness and balance at the same time. —James Suckling, jamessuckling.com

94 Points

Polished and vibrant, with bold huckleberry, fresh violet, bacon and crushed stone notes that take on richness and structure on a plush finish. Drink now through 2028. —Tim Fish, Wine Spectator


2016 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

98+ Points

The 2016 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard is a more meaty, savory effort that just jumps out of the glass with its ground black pepper, peat moss, cured meat, and smoky red and black raspberry fruits. Meaty, rich, concentrated, medium to full-bodied, with a tight, backward vibe, hide this in the cellar for 3-5 years and it will have two decades of longevity. —Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com

97 Points

From the first sniff, you know this is a special wine. The 2016 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard pops with a blackberry-scented nose and impressive, seductive Syrah tones reticent of the Northern Rhône, with a soft smokiness and mineral edge, warn leather and soft ashiness that lingers on with aromas of crushed violets. There are a noticeable stemmy and black pepper tones on the nose and palate that command my attention. This is a beautifully balanced expression that manages to focus on the elegant side of Syrah, without over-extracting, over-oaking or possessing screaming high alcohol, and the finish is long and contemplative with balanced tannins and structuring acidity—this will age beautifully for decades to come! There is a reason why Christophe Baron and crew are captivating the world's attention when it comes to the Rhône varietals… —Anthony Mueller, The Wine Advocate

94 Points

Plump with personality, yet focused and structured, with expressive huckleberry, violet, pepper and grilled beef accents that take on speed toward fine-grained tannins. Drink now through 2027. —Tim Fish, Wine Spectator


2015 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

98 Points

The 2015 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard is just as striking as its Grenache sibling, unfurling with an equally complex nose of sweet cassis, beef blood, bitter cocoa, peony and violets, with notions of grilled meat and truffle emerging with time. On the palate, the wine is full-bodied and amazingly intense, with a deep and multidimensional core framed by remarkably satiny, layered tannins, concluding with a long, saline finish. —William Kelley, The Wine Advocate

96 Points

The aromas provide brooding notes of brown stem, soot, freshly ground black pepper, wet rock, tar, grilled asparagus and smoked ham. The flavors are intense and wound up, showing layer upon layer of fruit and savory flavors. A supremely long, savory and floral finish caps it off. It's a complete “wow” wine. Best from 2026 to 2032. –Sean Sullivan, Wine Enthusiast

95 Points

Beautiful dried-rose florals here with very fragrant redder-tinged berry fruits, crushed stones and brown pepper. The palate has an elegant, supple and really lacy feel; smooth, pastry-like tannins and an elegant, sappy cherry-pip finish. Drink or hold. –James Suckling, jamessuckling.com


2014 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

98 Points

A captivating mix of ripe red plums with plenty of peppers, perfume, violets and spices, leading to a palate that has a stalky, sappy spine of pepper-dusted plums and savory meaty notes to close. Drink or hold. –James Suckling, jamessuckling.com

97 Points

Another soot, tar, mineral, bacon fat and smoked dark fruit driven beauty is the 2014 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard. Made from 100% Syrah, this peppery, bloody, iodine, full-bodied, concentrated effort has building tannin, a great mid-palate and a salt-laced finish. It's another unique, singular beauty that's going to benefit from short term cellaring and keep for two decades. –Jeb Dunnuck, The Wine Advocate


2013 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

97 Points

Up with the top three or four Syrahs in the vintage, the 2013 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard, which was bottled in August of last year, offers a complex, savory, mineral-laced style to go with a complex bouquet of ground herbs, pepper, beef blood, dried flower and cured meats. This is a full-bodied Syrah that has considerable mid-palate density, fine tannin and good overall freshness….Like the 2012, it needs 2-3 years of bottle age and will drink well for 15 years or more. –Jeb Dunnuck, The Wine Advocate


2012 Horsepower Vineyards Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard

96 Points

Very aromatic with dried flowers, wild blackberries, black raspberries, ground spices and white sesame. Full-bodied, so dense and dynamic, with crunchy tannins that are melting in your mouth, revealing delicious dark-berry flavors, as well as blue flowers and stones. From biodynamically grown grapes. Drink now or hold. —James Suckling, jamessuckling.com

(97-100 Points)

A new wine for 2012, the 2012 Syrah Sur Echalas Vineyard (same vineyard as the Grenache, and located just beside the Cayuse estate and the Armada Vineyard) is a stunning example of the quality coming from these rocky soils around Milton Freewater. Offering incredible notes of pepper, bacon fat, steak tartare, olive paste and deep, savory dark fruit, this full-bodied barrel sample has fabulous concentration, beautiful purity and a blockbuster finish. It too will have an easy 15 years or more of ultimate longevity. –Jeb Dunnuck, The Wine Advocate