A Manhattan-based Master Sommelier tastes some Washington State wines and is so inspired, he sells everything to move across the country to make his own. That’s the start of the story of Gramercy Cellars, where a close eye on the grapes (picked for almost-peak ripeness, mostly organic), matched with minimalist wine making techniques (no or little new oak, no additives) and a lot of time (extended aging) has created wine that’s considered some of the best that Washington offers.
Greg Harrington, with his wife, Pam, moved to Walla Walla in 2005 to make a specific kind of old-world-meets-new Rhône and Bordeaux varietals. Their goal was to leverage Greg’s background as a Master Sommelier for leading restauranteurs and the near perfect growing conditions near Walla Walla to create some of the best-reviewed wines from the region. The results are intense, yet restrained; elegant, yet earthy.
"Initially shy on the nose, the 2016 Syrah Lagniappe first shows a dusty core of dark red and black fruit tones, then reveals cassis, black raspberry and blackcurrant aromas alongside subtle notes of dusty dried herbs, ground pepper and hints of smoked meat. Medium to full-bodied in the mouth, the wine leads with softened Syrah expressions and has a focused line of minerality through to the mid-palate, with good balance, softer, grainy tannins and structured acidity. It ends with red-fruit jus and mild black pepper tones on the finish. Only 573 cases made. If you are looking for a generous and robust style of Syrah, this delicate, elegant and mineral-driven bottling is not for you." 93+ pts, Anthony Mueller, WA