Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Wine >
Sep 6, 2011 03:25 PM

Buttery Chardonnay (looking for syrah)

Thanks for all the suggestions for buttery chardonnay. My favorite continues to be Bogle, but the flavor changes from year to year. I like to try others and like most of the ones recommended. Now I am looking for a good Syrah.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Ahhhh - Bogle IS the best! Love a good and affordable buttery chardonnay - looking forward to seeing the replies for a good Syrah, I'd love to find one too.

    11 Replies
    1. re: dalmadarling

      I assume you are not looking for a "buttery" syrah, but what do you like? As chefjune said, the best syrah comes from France, and it is very different than what is produced in California, Washington, or Oregon. (Of course, it is rare that you find a 100% syrah form France unless you are spending some major money.) On the other hand, Shiraz from Australia is essentially syrah evolved into something quite similar but different.

      So what do you want in terms of the profile you are looking for? Full-bodied and complex, or something more silky andsubdued? Flavors of cranberry and wild berrys, with dashes of pepper and spice, or plums and cherry with some graphite?

      What price range are you looking at?

      1. re: dinwiddie

        Not sure what Barbwire65 is looking for, but if you have recommendations on a full-bodied syrah I'd love that - the cranberry & wild berrys with dashes of peer and spice sound amazing! Right up my alley.

        1. re: dalmadarling

          Try to find the 2008 Smoking Loon Syrah California. It is really good for being so inexpensive. While I tend to buy and drink very small productions (under 300 cases) syrahs, this wine was made in fairly large quantities (over 16,000 cases) and cost under $10. There should be a lot of fairly inexpensive and good 2008 syrahs as there was a glut of syrah that year and it was a fairly good quality crop.

          1. re: dinwiddie

            Is this something a grocery store might carry, or should I be looking in wine shops? I'm talking about the 2008 Smoking Loon. Thanks.

            1. re: LulusMom

              I'd think that you would have to look in a wine shop but I wouldn't know since they don't sell wine in grocery stores here where I live. They make a lot of the Smoking Loon, which is why I suggested it, but not hundreds of thousands of cases like most supermarket wines.

              1. re: dinwiddie

                If I remember correctly, you live in DC, right? I grew up there, and lived there until 03. It took me a while to get used to having wine in the grocery store. Once, early on here (Chapel Hill, NC), I went in and asked if they had any sangiovese. The guy in the wine section said "any what??" and I asked again. He said, "Lady, this isn't New York." So ... yes, the wine selection in most of the grocery stores isn't the same as in wine store. Anyway, thanks for the info.

                1. re: LulusMom

                  You're quite right -- Smoking Loon CAN be found in supermarkets here in California, but I cannot speak to Chapel HIll. ;^)

                  And I always find it a bit disconcerting when I'm traveling and wine ISN'T in grocery stores . . .

                  1. re: zin1953

                    I'm enough of a wine snob that I probably don't want to drink most of what is in grocery stores, unless of course we are talking about Costco, but I certainly wish it was available here. Actually, in the county I live in Maryland, one grocery store in each chain can sell wine, but then the county is the only legal wholesaler, and they know very little about wine and mark it up an obscene amount, so I go to DC whenever I'm looking to buy wine retail.

                    1. re: dinwiddie

                      DC has *much* better wine stores than anything you'd find county-run. I miss those wine stores a lot.

                      1. re: dinwiddie

                        Depends upon the grocery store . . . there are several independent grocery stores and/or supermarkets with truly excellent selections.

                        1. re: zin1953

                          I totally believe there are, in California. Not so much in North Carolina. I even think the WFs wine section here is pretty horrible.

      2. If you want to talk about Syrah here, shouldn't you have appropriately named this thread?

        Imho the best Syrah comes from France.

        1 Reply
        1. re: ChefJune

          I haven't discovered how to change the title of my post. Maybe I should just close it and start another one??? Maybe I should name it. Love Wine ... especially reasonable wine.

        2. I am an absolute syrah whore! And with it rolling into syrah season, I cannot wait. Something about the fall brings out the syrah in me! Some of my favorites:

          Sine Qua Non, Lillian, and Next of Kyn. Pricey, but the best syrah out there. None of them are all that accessible with the exception of Lillian, and you will find it at retail from time to time. Some other syrah that are in this category but less expensive include Saxum, Linne Colado, and Myriad.

          Now, on the more affordable side, Stefania is a favorite, and delicious, yet mailing list only for the most part. Carlisle makes OUTSTANDING syrah for the money, but again, hard to find.

          More accessible and great quality at the price are Arcadian and Melville. Awesome wines from great vineyards, and I buy them by the case. Finally, Andrew Murray is another favorite.

          Hope that helps. -mJ

          1 Reply
          1. re: njfoodies


            Try some of Shane Finley's syrahs, you should like them a lot.

          2. In my neck of the woods, I like the Unti Benchland syrah, the Holly's Hill
            Wylie Fenaughty syrah, and the Cedarville and Terre Rouge syrahs. In fact Cedarville had
            a vertical tasting of its syrahs at its open house last June and the 2004
            and 2005 syrahs are perfect for drinking now. Unti is located in Dry Creek valley
            in Sonoma, Holly's Hill and Cedarville are close to Placerville in El Dorado county,
            and Terre Rouge is in Plymouth in Amador county. Terre Rouge has
            actually 3 syrahs ranging in price from $18 to $35 to $90. I think the middle one
            is a reasonable compromise between quality and price.