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Jeff Cohn Cellars

2018 Buffalo Hill Syrah
2018 Buffalo Hill Syrah
Our flagship wine — Sustainably-farmed Rockpile Vineyard

What amazes me the most about this wine, is how over the years this wine has changed and has been so consistent at the same time. As this vineyard has matured, so has my approach to the winemaking. Over the years I continue to work with larger percentages of whole cluster additions which I feel add not only more complexity, but also make this wine more compelling and balanced.

A dark cherry red color with purple tones. An intensely forward, but also backward nose, that soars from the glass, but also pulls you into the glass so you smell each and every aromatic note. Black cherry, rosemary, dark chocolate, dried age beef, crème de cassis, and a touch of cherry wood. An opulent wine from the front-mid and finish of the palate. This wine truly coats every tastebud on your tongue. A true sensory experience.

This vintage reminds me of Hermitage, but with more red earth notes. A total reflection of the aromas is on the palate, but with more pinpoint intensity. Loaded with black and red fruits, roasted earth and lavender, plus enough minerality structure to let this wine age for at least 15 - 20 years.

Limit 6

Why This Wine?

In 1991, Rod Park and his wife, Cathy converted a dilapidated former sheep ranch into Rockpile Vineyard. This wine comes from the highest and rockiest site at the vineyard, that I just knew had to be planted with Syrah. I had mine set but Rod wanted to leave the grassy and rocky hillside alone. So, in 2002, after many bottles of wine kicked in, I talked him into it, and next thing you know, we are planting Syrah on the top of the hill!

Welcome Buffalo Hill Syrah. The wine name and label was inspired by his hand-carved wooden buffalo which stands as the vineyard's sentinel, watching over and protecting it. Rod was a past Chancellor at University of Colorado Boulder, the buffalo their mascot. Now, the Syrah's icon.

Rockpile is one of the smallest AVA’s in the nation, producing ultra-premium hillside fruit. Power and intensity are the trademark for our flagship wine. No other Syrah in California is like it. It's craggy soil produces some of the most complex and distinctive minerality in all of California.

Vineyard & Vinification 

Appellation: Rockpile

Vineyard: Rockpile, sustainably farmed, vines planted in 2002

Planted at 2010-ft. elevation of granite, loam, clay, quartz, it's the heaviest, rockiest, and steepest vineyard at Rockpile. This elevation puts more stress on the vines producing thick-skinned and small berries. The granite adds a mineral backbone to the weight that the clay creates in the wine. 

Learn More About Rockpile Vineyard

Vinification: 100% Syrah, 80 cases produced.

The fruit is hand-picked then cold-soaked. I gently foot-stomp the fruit of which 30% is whole cluster, the rest is whole berry and de-stemmed. None is crushed. The wine goes through open-top, then 100% Malolactic fermentation and aged 18 months in large-format 100% new French oak barrels. Will age effortlessly in the Cohn Zone: drink now - 2040.

Club Pricing 

Rockpile Members Save 25% - $131.25

Iris Members Save 20% - $140.00

Pure Yum Members Save 15% - $148.75

Magic Members Save 10% - $157.50

Choose Your Club 

Flat Rate Ground Shipping

$.01   12+     750 mL bottles

$ 15   1 - 11  750 mL bottles

📦 Shipping Alert: We're watching the weather. If below 30° or above 70°, we won't ground ship your wine. We recommend FedEx Priority Overnight® to protect it from extreme temperatures.


99 Jeb Dunnuck, 96 Connoisseurs' Guide, 95 Wine Advocate, 92 Wine Enthusiast
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Wine Specs
Vineyard Designation
Rockpile Vineyard
Harvest Date
Alcohol %
Wine Enthusiast
Connoisseurs' Guide
Wine Advocate
Wine Profile
Pro Reviews
99 Jeb Dunnuck - Another killer Syrah from Cohn that flirts with perfection, the 2018 Syrah Buffalo Hill Rockpile Vineyard comes from a single vineyard in the Rockpile AVA of Sonoma, and I always find an incredible Hermitage-like character in this cuvée. Deep purple, with a primordial bouquet of crème de cassis and blackberry fruits as well as graphite, scorched earth, bacon fat, and violets, it hits the palate with full-bodied richness, a layered, multi-dimensional texture, massive amounts of fruit, and a finish that won't quit. It's not for those seeking lightweight aromas and flavors but it nevertheless stays beautifully balanced, has ultra-fine tannins, and a great finish. It will evolve effortlessly for 15 years or more. 95 Wine Advocate - The 2018 Syrah Buffalo Hill from the Rockpile vineyard was made with 30% whole cluster and aged 18 months in 100% new French oak. Deep ruby, it has lush aromas of cassis, grilled meats, cedar, dried herbs and licorice. Full-bodied, rounded and fresh, the palate is packed with layers of fruit and savory accents. This vintage manages power and elegance and is notable in the purity and layering of its flavors.
Food Pairing Notes
A wonderful pairing with meat dishes, Stilton or Bleu cheese.
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