2015 Failla Hudson Vineyard Syrah, Napa Valley

Most Monday evenings we are home enjoying a meal with our friend, Dave. Dave is super into wine. Red wine. He’s not a fan of white wine and isn’t persuaded by bubbles. We know better than to pour a rosé. So Mondays have become a red wine day in our house which, of course, is a good thing because we both enjoy red wine very much. It can become a challenge to choose a red wine when the temperature outside reaches 106º F, as it did yesterday, when I am more inclined to grab a chilled white wine or a rosé. This is not a problem, however, just a challenge and an opportunity to find a lighter red wine that pleases all of us. Last night we succeeded brilliantly.

Failla Hudson Vineyard Syrah2015 Failla Hudson Vineyard Syrah, Napa Valleymedium ruby in the glass with generous aromas of red fruit and hints of smoke. Bright red fruit flavors are up front, ripe raspberries and strawberries, along with the dark fruit flavors of blackberries. Cedar floats in the background along with a slate-like minerality and an earthy component. Tannins are drying and well integrated into the flavors of the wine which last a good long time. The body is on the light side of medium. Aromas of dried alfalfa hay remain in the empty glass. 14.2% abv. Purchased from the winery.

This is an agile and complex Syrah with loads of flavor and texture. It was the perfect choice for a warm summer evening, demonstrating to me the versatility of red wines made in a less heavy and ponderous style — they’re perfect for warm weather or cold.

According to winery notes:

THE HUDSON VINEYARD, which covers 200 planted acres in southwestern Napa Valley, was planted in the early 1980s by Texas expat Lee Hudson here on Haire loam soil at the southern tip of the Mayacamas Mountain range, approximately 20 miles north of the San Pablo Bay. Cool and foggy in the morning, fruit ripens evenly thanks to abundant sunshine during the growing season.

The Failla Hudson Vineyard Syrah was made using 100% whole clusters with fermentation utilizing only native yeast. Aging for 11 months in 25% new French oak followed and the wine was bottled without fining or filtration. 312 cases produced.

My first introduction to Failla wines was a stellar 2014 Failla Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir.

That Pinot Noir was elegant, weightless, complex and ethereal; it was one of the most memorable wines I tasted in all of 2016. I immediately joined the Failla Wines mailing list. The rest is history. I have since fallen in love with Failla Chardonnay, and now Syrah in addition to that most memorable Pinot Noir.

We received the Failla Pinot Noir as a wine club shipment from Les Marchands Wine Bar & Merchant in Santa Barbara. We find the monthly wine shipments interesting, delicious and eclectic. It introduces us to a wide variety of wines in a style we enjoy. That’s exactly what a wine club should do and is an excellent example of why a wine club curated by a knowledgeable wine merchant is so worthwhile. I do love wine.



  1. Love Failla! Will have to try the Syrah (I’ve had the PN on numerous occasions). I’m a huge fan of the wine-making aesthetic