(6 customer reviews)

Hors Categorie Syrah 2018

$349.95
PRICE CLUB members save $37 per bottle
14.50% /
750ml /
Vintage: 2018
  • WS 95
  • WE 98
  • WA 97
  • JD 98
  • JS 97
  • OB 100
  • VIN 100
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Crafting the remarkable Hors Categorie Syrah 2018 under the skilled guidance of winemakerChristophe Baronhas achieved a pinnacle of Syrah expression. Translating to a place of its own, this wine sources from a two-acre plot nestled at 1,400 feet altitude, home to 11-year-old Syrah vines.

Its deep garnet color invites exploration. On the nose, an intense aromatic dance unfolds. Green peppercorns, iron, and bull’s blood intermingle with hints of orange rind and black currant, evoking the spirit of Côte-Rôtie. The palate captivates with an impeccable balance, displaying a dense core of blackberry compote and crème de violette. Saline-drenched orange notes entwined with stony undertones, reminiscent of the terroir’s origins.

Critics showered this vintage with accolades, bestowing it with 100 points. Owen Bargreen of Vinous praises its youthful exuberance and predicts another decade of cellar potential. Jeb Dunnuck’s 98+ points review lauds the savory symphony, likening it to the Côte Brune side of Côte Rôtie, and applauds the wine’s distinctive style and impeccable balance.

Structured and intense, this wine’s explosive palate reveals layers of smoked blackcurrants, cured meats, and violets, much to the acclaim of Sean Sullivan and Anthony Mueller, who also praise its structure and compelling finish. James Suckling’s admiration for the intense, savory nose and silky tannins further underscores the wine’s complexity.

Weight 3.5 lbs
Size

6 reviews for Hors Categorie Syrah 2018

  1. WS

    Distinctive and dynamic, this Syrah overflows with blueberry, blackberry and smoked meat flavors accented by black olive and licorice. Builds toward savory tannins. Drink now through 2031.

  2. WE

    In just a few short years, this wine has distinguished itself as one of the very best in the world. The only wine coming from this site in the North Fork area of the valley and harvested at barely a ton per acre on slopes that go up to 60% grade, the aromas rise from the glass, with notes of sea breeze, firepit, medicine, olive and fresh herb. It explodes on the palate with intense, rich savory flavors with crushed flowers on the finish. As always, beyond the intensity, it is the structure that truly separates this wine. The finish also refuses to quit. It a wine that grabs you, shakes you and refuses to let go.

  3. WA

    Another impressive bottling for Hors Catégorie, the 2018 Syrah opens with a seductive and aromatic nose filled with smoked lavender, black raspberry skin, umami, hung meats, black olive, red and black peppercorn and spiced plum reduction. Medium to full-bodied, it explodes on the palate, revealing a generous profile with complexity, elegance and finesse. Flavors of turned earth, smoked cherry pie filling, spicy potpourri and worn leather sway across the mid-palate with impeccable balance that will remain a champion for almost two decades. The wine ends with a long, winding, expressive and complex finish that has me coming back for second and third helpings. This comes from a steep vineyard planted on a 60° slope that has been farmed with a biodynamic approach since its inception. Bravo, I want more! If you are lucky enough to find some of this wine, buy it!

  4. JD

    As always, the 2018 Syrah turns the savory dial up to 11, offering an incredible array of smoked blackcurrants, blueberries, cured meats, shiitake mushroom, violets, and ground pepper-like aromas and flavors. Coming from two steep hillsides of broken basalt off the north fork of the Walla Walla River, I’ve often compared this cuvée to a wine from the Côte Brune side of Côte Rôtie, and that still holds, yet this certainly has its own style. Medium to full-bodied, pure, and layered on the palate, it has gorgeous tannins, flawless balance, and a great finish. There’s nothing else in the world like it. Give bottles 2-4 years and enjoy over the following 15+.

  5. JS

    This has an intense, savory nose of barbecued meat, tar, grilled mushroom, dried herbs, burnt orange and black fruit. It’s full-bodied with sleek, velvety tannins. Very silky and seamless. Smoky, spicy layers with bitter-herb and saline undertones on the long, flavorful finish. Some tobacco and iodine.

  6. VIN

    Literally translated as ‘a place of its own,’ the 2018 Syrah from Hors Catégorie was sourced from a two-acre plot at 1,400 feet of densely planted 11 years old Syrah vines. Aromatically quite intense, it shows a very Côte-Rôtie nose as green peppercorns, iron, bull’s blood, orange rind and black currant scents all take shape in the glass. The palate displays incredible balance and minerality, offering a dense core of blackberry compote, crème de violette, saline-drenched orange, and stony undertones. Glorious in its fresh youth, this has another decade or more to go in the cellar. It’s the finest edition of this wine that I have tasted so far. Tasted twice with similar results.

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Critical Acclaim

WS 95

Wine Spectator

Distinctive and dynamic, this Syrah overflows with blueberry, blackberry and smoked meat flavors accented by black olive and licorice. Builds toward savory tannins. Drink now through 2031.
WE 98

Wine Enthusiast

In just a few short years, this wine has distinguished itself as one of the very best in the world. The only wine coming from this site in the North Fork area of the valley and harvested at barely a ton per acre on slopes that go up to 60% grade, the aromas rise from the glass, with notes of sea breeze, firepit, medicine, olive and fresh herb. It explodes on the palate with intense, rich savory flavors with crushed flowers on the finish. As always, beyond the intensity, it is the structure that truly separates this wine. The finish also refuses to quit. It a wine that grabs you, shakes you and refuses to let go.
WA 97

Wine Advocate

Another impressive bottling for Hors Catégorie, the 2018 Syrah opens with a seductive and aromatic nose filled with smoked lavender, black raspberry skin, umami, hung meats, black olive, red and black peppercorn and spiced plum reduction. Medium to full-bodied, it explodes on the palate, revealing a generous profile with complexity, elegance and finesse. Flavors of turned earth, smoked cherry pie filling, spicy potpourri and worn leather sway across the mid-palate with impeccable balance that will remain a champion for almost two decades. The wine ends with a long, winding, expressive and complex finish that has me coming back for second and third helpings. This comes from a steep vineyard planted on a 60° slope that has been farmed with a biodynamic approach since its inception. Bravo, I want more! If you are lucky enough to find some of this wine, buy it!
JD 98

Jeb Dunnuck

As always, the 2018 Syrah turns the savory dial up to 11, offering an incredible array of smoked blackcurrants, blueberries, cured meats, shiitake mushroom, violets, and ground pepper-like aromas and flavors. Coming from two steep hillsides of broken basalt off the north fork of the Walla Walla River, I've often compared this cuvée to a wine from the Côte Brune side of Côte Rôtie, and that still holds, yet this certainly has its own style. Medium to full-bodied, pure, and layered on the palate, it has gorgeous tannins, flawless balance, and a great finish. There's nothing else in the world like it. Give bottles 2-4 years and enjoy over the following 15+.
JS 97

James Suckling

This has an intense, savory nose of barbecued meat, tar, grilled mushroom, dried herbs, burnt orange and black fruit. It’s full-bodied with sleek, velvety tannins. Very silky and seamless. Smoky, spicy layers with bitter-herb and saline undertones on the long, flavorful finish. Some tobacco and iodine.
OB 100

Owen Bargreen

Literally translated as 'a place of its own,' the 2018 Syrah from Hors Catégorie was sourced from a two-acre plot at 1,400 feet of densely planted 11 years old Syrah vines. Aromatically quite intense, it shows a very Côte-Rôtie nose as green peppercorns, iron, bull’s blood, orange rind and black currant scents all take shape in the glass. The palate displays incredible balance and minerality, offering a dense core of blackberry compote, crème de violette, saline-drenched orange, and stony undertones. Glorious in its fresh youth, this has another decade or more to go in the cellar. It’s the finest edition of this wine that I have tasted so far. Tasted twice with similar results.
VIN 100

Vinous

Literally translated as 'a place of its own,' the 2018 Syrah from Hors Catégorie was sourced from a two-acre plot at 1,400 feet of densely planted 11 years old Syrah vines. Aromatically quite intense, it shows a very Côte-Rôtie nose as green peppercorns, iron, bull’s blood, orange rind and black currant scents all take shape in the glass. The palate displays incredible balance and minerality, offering a dense core of blackberry compote, crème de violette, saline-drenched orange, and stony undertones. Glorious in its fresh youth, this has another decade or more to go in the cellar. It’s the finest edition of this wine that I have tasted so far. Tasted twice with similar results.

What does Hors Categorie Syrah 2018 taste like?


Light
Bold
Smooth
Tannic
Dry
Sweet
Soft
Acidic
Earthy Flavors of the wine

smoke, salt

Black Fruit Flavors of the wine

black cherry, blackcurrant, blueberry

Aromas and Flavors of Spices in the wine

pepper, star anise

Citrus notes found in the wine

blood orange

black raisin

Food Pairing with Hors Categorie Syrah 2018

Our wine experts think this Bold and Structured Hors Categorie Syrah 2018 wine would be a match made in heaven with these dishes. Bon appétit!
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Nestled in the picturesque North Fork of the Walla Walla River, Hors Categorie emerges as a beacon of viticultural excellence. This pioneering venture, established in 2011, carves its niche on the steep slopes shadowed by the majestic Blue Mountains. The vineyard's location, where the North Fork converges with the Walla Walla River, is not just a geographical coordinate; it's a statement of intent and quality. Hors Categorie, with its Syrah vines clinging to the hillside, surrounded by striking rock formations, represents a bold step into the world of fine winemaking. The vineyards, strategically positioned on these rugged inclines, delve deep into the fractured basalt soil. This quest for nutrients beneath the surface is a testament to the tenacity and resilience of Hors Categorie's...check our brand Hors Categorie
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Syrah, a dark-skinned red grape, has earned its place in the wine world as a producer of full-bodied wines boasting robust fruit flavors. While its origins have stirred debates, the northern Rhône Valley of eastern France is indisputably its modern viticultural home. Additionally, in Australia, Syrah reigns supreme and is often known as Shiraz, gaining a distinct personality in this land down under. One of the defining features of Syrah is its adaptability to various viticultural regions across the globe. It flourishes in temperate to warm climates, where it can manifest its true potential. The climatic conditions and soil profiles of these regions play a crucial role in nurturing this grape variety. Syrah wines emanate a captivating bouquet. In their youth, they can be quite...Please check Syrah for more information

Winemaker of Hors Categorie Syrah 2018

Christophe Baron

Christophe Baron

Christophe Baron, a visionary winemaker with roots in Champagne, France, has carved a niche in the Walla Walla Valley, Washington, transforming his passion into a diverse array of exceptional wines. His journey, which began with an intended focus on Oregon's Pinot Noir, took an unexpected turn upon his discovery of the unique, stony terrain in the Rocks District of Milton-Freewater AVA. In 1996, this led to the establishment of Cayuse Vineyards, which he nurtured from a humble 5-acre beginning to an expansive 45-acre estate. Baron’s repertoire at Cayuse is a testament to his versatility and deep understanding of viticulture. He is renowned for crafting wines that vividly express the minerality and earthiness characteristic of the vineyard's basalt cobblestone terroir, echoing the... More Products
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Nestled in the southeastern corner of Washington State, with its graceful extension into Oregon, the Walla Walla Valley AVA is an exquisite illustration of how geography and passion merge to define exceptional winemaking regions. This picturesque valley, cradling vineyards on both sides of the state border, flourishes amidst rolling hills and the serpentine Walla Walla River, a tributary of the mighty Columbia River. The story of Walla Walla Valley's wine is one of resurrection and innovation. It dates back to the 1850s when early settlers, captivated by the region’s untapped potential, introduced the first vine plantings. These pioneers recognized the area’s promise, but their initial viticulture efforts were... ...Check Region for more information

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