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2017 Cayuse Bionic Frog Syrah

ITEM 8448876 - Removed from a subterranean, temperature and humidity controlled residential cellar; Obtained by inheritance; Consignor is second owner

Bidder Amount Total
$195
Item Sold Amount Date
I8400770 2 $220 Aug 21, 2022
I8380181 1 $210 Aug 14, 2022
I8342540 1 $190 Jul 24, 2022
I8338795 1 $190 Jul 24, 2022
I8331173 1 $190 Jul 17, 2022
I8320140 6 $190 Jul 10, 2022
I8314778 3 $190 Jul 10, 2022
Front Item Photo

RATINGS

98Robert M. Parker Jr.

...aromas of blackberry, black raspberry and smoked plum. Medium to full-bodied, the wine explodes with intention and precision on the palate, with an immaculate balance and crystal-clear focus. Brilliantly structured, the wine continues to evolve with subtle and seamlessly integrated spice tones compounded by a mineral tension and a floral lift to make this wine float across the mid-palate. The wine glides effortlessly to a long, winding finish with persistence and the elegance of silk...

98Jeb Dunnuck

...incredibly elegant expression of this cuvée, it reveals an almost opaque purple hue to go with stunning, Jamet Cote Rotie-like notes of black raspberries, spring flowers, bacon fat, green olives, and sweet mulch. More cured meats and salted pork notes develop with time in the glass, and it’s a wonderfully complex, layered, nuanced Syrah. Boasting medium to full-bodied richness on the palate, flawless balance, and a great, great finish...

PRODUCER

Cayuse

Cayuse, in Walla Walla Valley, was founded in 1997 by Christophe Baron, a native of France. He grew up in a family of vignerons in Champagne and could have had a life making elegant Champagnes. Instead, Baron today is known as a brash trailblazer with an instinct for undiscovered terroir and a talent for producing big, delicious Syrahs. Baron studied viticulture in Burgundy and Champagne, and had ambitions to make Pinot Noir in Oregon. But on a trip to the U.S. in the late 1990s he happened to stop in Walla Walla, where south of the city he discovered property he believed would be perfect for growing grapes. The dry soil was partly composed of rocks the size of potatoes, and it reminded Baron of Châteauneuf -du-Pape. Though there had been no vineyards in the area since 1956, Baron purchased land and planted vineyards. He now owns 60 acres in what recently became Washington’s newest AVA, the Rocks District of Milton-Freewater. Baron grows mostly Syrah, along with some Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Merlot, Tempranillo and Viognier. Baron is an advocate of biodynamic, or chemical-free agriculture, and Cayuse is biodynamic. Cayuse’s signature wines are Syrahs, which often come with fanciful names, such as Bionic Frog Syrah, and outstanding ratings. Cayuse Syrahs are considered among the most collectible Washington wines. Baron also is involved with several other unorthodox winemaking ventures in Washington. He owns Horsepower, a Walla Walla estate where he uses Belgian draft horses instead of tractors, and he is one of the owners of No Girls Wines, which is a collaboration between Baron and some of his Cayuse employees. The name No Girls comes from a hand-painted sign found on the side of an historic building that Baron and his partners acquired in downtown Walla Walla. The building was once home to a brothel, but the sign went up to signal the end of that era.

REGION

United States, Washington, Walla Walla Valley

Walla Walla Valley AVA likes to call itself the Napa Valley of Washington, and given the concentration of well-reviewed wineries in the appellation, the comparison is understandable. The Walla Walla appellation is comprised of 340,000 acres, of which 1,200 acres are vineyards. Walla Walla is located in the southeastern corner of Washington and it extends slightly into northeastern Oregon. It is named after the Walla Walla River Valley, and the city of Walla Walla is the commercial center of Washington’s wine industry. The city was founded in the 1840s by the Hudson’s Bay Company as a trading post, but as early as the 1850s farmers were planting grapes for winemaking. Prohibition shuttered winemaking in the early 20th century, but a winemaking renaissance started in the 1970s when Leonetti Cellars, still one of the state’s most acclaimed wineries, started producing acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon. Walla Walla’s AVA status was awarded in 1984 and today there are more than 100 wineries. Cabernet Sauvignon is the most frequently planted grape, followed by Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese Chardonnay and Viognier.

TYPE

Red Wine, Syrah (Shiraz)

This grape is grown in milder climates and produces a medium-to full-bodied wine. It is also known as Shiraz, but should not be confused with Petit Sirah, which was developed by crossing Syrah with Peloursin.