By Rick Riozza

We don’t know if it’s politically correct or what, but please allow us to introduce No Girls. This is a wine label from one of our favorite wine regions in the world—seriously! And the area produces some seriously delicious Syrahs and Syrah-blend wines.: We’re talking about the wonderful wines of Walla Walla, Washington State.

And let’s allow the winery’s PR to speak: “No Girls celebrates the belief that empowered women create empowered wine—and champions the many talented and independent women of this profession and beyond.”

“The No Girls moniker is a nod to the city of Walla Walla’s colorful and vibrant history. As was common in the wild American west, bordellos (aka brothels) operated freely in the growing community. As times and people changed and the women’s suffrage movement began, the famed houses of ill repute began to close.


“In 2002 Christophe Baron purchased a downtown building that had once housed such a bordello. When he walked through the doors for the first time, he found the scene almost eerily preserved. At the top of a flight of wide, sweeping stairs, the words “No Girls” were still visible where they had been painted on a wall sometime in the 1960s— the wine label is an actual photograph.

“The unique phrase signifies the ending of an era that marginalized and compromised female empowerment, and represents the dawning of the age of women’s rights. So No Girls is far more than just wine—it’s powered by the strength of women, a sense of history, progressive thought and ‘Savoir Faire.’”

“Beyond the building and its colorful legacy, the name No Girls recognizes our rich history, and is a gesture of respect and appreciation to everyone who created the Walla Walla Valley we enjoy today.”

So any of you wine enthusiasts out there who relish their Syrah, know already the fame of Walla Walla’s preeminent wine maker Christophe Baron, the Frenchman who put Washington State Syrah & Cabs on the map.

“Perhaps you’ve heard the almost mythical story, how the brash, young French Vigneron visited the then little-known town called Walla Walla, and fell in love with a few acres of seemingly useless, stone-covered farmland. While the nay-sayers nayed, Christophe Baron deftly turned that field of stones into the acclaimed Cayuse Vineyards. And the rest, as they say, is history—and a whole lot of spectacular wine.

“Cayuse is a domaine located in the Stones of the Walla Walla Valley. Over the past 20 years, Christophe has made it his mission to craft food-friendly wines of incredible depth, individuality and character—all from fruit grown entirely using biodynamic farming methods.

“Historically, women were excluded from the key stages of wine production, hampered by the prevailing societal belief that it was strictly “a man’s work.” No Girls offers a new narrative that’s driven by the strength and resilience of women. The wines are as modern, opinionated and powerful as the name suggests.

“Developing a style that is a true reflection of the uniqueness and character of La Paciencia Vineyard, Cayuse Vineyards’ Resident Vigneronne Elizabeth Bourcier and Christophe Baron have worked together since the first release of No Girls in 2008.”

Elizabeth took over sole wine studio responsibility for the project with the 2011 vintage. And she has had carte blanche on all aspects of the wine creation. The wines have earned routinely high accolades, with Wine Spectator calling them “some of the best Washington wines ever rated” by the magazine.

Elizabeth Bourcier started in the wine industry at 18 as part of the first graduating class at Walla Walla Community College’s Center for Enology & Viticulture. After stints in Paso Robles and Mendoza, she was hired at high-flying Cayuse Vineyards. I remember the first time we visited Walla Walla to visit the community college. “I didn’t know a lot about winemaking or vineyards at all and yet I knew I wanted to do this after I went there.” Over the last decade, she has helped create more than 60 wines that have scored 95 points or above, while her own La Rata brand has earned cult status.

“The grapes come from the La Paciencia vineyard, which means patience in Spanish—appropriate since the project was ten years in the making. The tightly spaced vines, planted on an angle in the Stones of the Walla Walla Valley, give No Girls a personality all its own, and the wines are focused and pure. These are food friendly creations that reflect finesse, elegance, charm and character.”

And now—a quick review of some world class No Girls:

2019 No Girls Wines Double Lucky ($44) this wine is black and red-fruited, with a spicy note of cured meat and lavender flowing from the glass along with a delightful mineral essence. Medium to full-bodied, the wine is broadly layered and possesses fine-grained tannins and succulent acidity, making me crave charcuterie. The gorgeous wine will remain food-friendly for years and ends with a lingering, spicy grip. 93 points,” Anthony Mueller, The Wine Advocate

2017 No Girls La Paciencia Vineyard Syrah ($100)

“Classic “Rocks” Syrah with its meaty, bloody blue fruits, ground black pepper, cured meats, violets, and spring flower aromas and flavors. Beautifully textured, concentrated, medium to full-bodied, and flawlessly balanced” —Jeb Dunnuck,

“Simply stunning. This immediately begins to impress as aromas of black raspberries and black cherries come together with a wonderful umami character of fresh mushrooms and soy, which are joined by wet stones, black olives and hints of potpourri nuances.

On the palate this is medium to full-bodied and structured with silky/polished tannins resulting in a seamless delivery. It goes on to impress with its outstanding concentration and beautiful acidity which provides excellent lift as well as a remarkable sense of freshness making it impossible to resist. The finish is long and expressive, echoing notes of juicy black raspberries, umami and savory characters that linger on. 97 points”—Jeremy Young, International Wine Report. Cheers!