Tasho and I (Jimm) tasted this wine under our usual rigorous tasting conditions, giving the wine ample time to open and show its hand. As mentioned, this is a Rhone-inspired blend from Paso Robles, California. However, atypical from Southern Rhones, this blend showcases an interesting 50% Petite Sirah with the normal Rhone elements of Syrah, Grenache and Mourvedre composing the other half. Also, while this wine does display a power one might expect from a Paso Robles red, it does it with finesse, complexity, and less alcohol (13.9%) than some of the high-octane offerings from the region. But the fruit is unmistakably the star of the show here and is well displayed and supported.
Initially, the nose reveals a tarry quality, yet combined with a dry, spicy leafiness. There is an earthy depth here, stewed plums with reduced blackberry paste, and blue fruit and dark chocolate powder that richly extends to the plush mid-palate. The fruit-forward finish is long and underpinned by an herbal/spice softness.
While not the usual would-be Rhone blend, fans of the style will find a welcome value here, rich and complex, powerful without unnecessary muscle, and delicious fruit served upon very balanced tannins. A joy to drink.
This article was published on February 12, 2016