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Happy New Year 2024!

Gosh 2023 was a crazy year and I don't think I blogged since around last Easter. But I am back with a commitment to blog weekly about my continuing attempt to consume my 1200 bottles of wine. My goal was (still is) to drink these over the next 10 years (or roughly 120 per year). Through the first two years (2022 and 2023) I am at 210 downed (so a bit behind pace) but worse is I still have 1,053 bottles in my offsite wine cellar and roughly 50+ bottles at home - so net net I have only dropped 100 bottles over the past two years. That said this past year I cut way back on buying new wine - dropping my long-time memberships in many wineries such as Duckhorn, Joseph Phelps and Kosta Browne. The only wine I bought in 2023 was some Cayuse, Saxum, Kistler (chardonnay) and Horsepower.

The best thing we bought in 2023 was actually our new rescue dog - Duke (or The Duke as I affectionately call him). Named after your choice of - 1) my youngest son's university, 2) the great Hawaiian surfer or 3) Marmaduke (which he kind of reminds me of). I swear I am not choking him in the below photo :). He is a lab/mutt mix with the whiskers/goatee I love in my dogs.

So on to wine. Thru the first week of the new year I have had three bottles - a Horsepower (HP) The Tribe syrah from 2017, a Joseph Phelps (JP) Insignia from 2001 (yes it was 22 years old - I have held it that long) and a 2015 Sonoma Coast Kosta Browne (KB) pinot. I have a lot of JP and KB but had never drank one of my HP's and they just offered me the current year allocation in January so I wanted to see if I should buy some more. So let me focus this blog on that bottle.

HP's winemaker is Christopher Baron (he also makes Cayuse which is his more famous winery) so he has a great first name going for him. He focuses on Syrah and Grenache and his vineyards are in the Walla Walla region of the state of WA. The Tribe vineyard is dedicated to Syrah. I have found the syrahs of WA to be very powerful when young (Cayuse, Reynvaan, No Girls and now HP). Almost metallic like in some bottles which is a turnoff to me. But after a few hours of decanting or even more so the next day the fruit from these wines show through. Cost of the bottle was about $120 before tax and shipping - so cheaper than most cabs but on the pricey side for Syrahs. Intense dark fruit is how I would describe this wine at such a young age (only six years in the bottle). Since I still have 33 bottles of various HP's from 2017-2020, I have decided to pass on buying anymore. I did like the wine but at some point I need to deplete my inventory.

It's NFL wildcard weekend - my Bills play my Steelers. My Cowboys play the Packers and the weather is miserable everywhere, including here in DFW with temps in the teens for the next few days. Stay warm my friends and have some vino to warm the blood.

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