The 2017 vintage started with a cold, wet winter that replenished the dry soils throughout Paso Robles after five years of drought. Warmer weather in March encouraged a slightly early bud break late in the month and a few well-spaced showers added to the season’s precipitation totals. May was warm and with the generous moisture in the soils, heavy vegetative growth on the vines prompted careful and early canopy management to balance vine development for the coming season. Things turned very hot in June and July with record breaking heat that caused an early veraison toward late July. The hot weather continued throughout August pushing ripeness levels and causing some concern with early ripening varieties. Things cooled off nicely in September, balancing maturity and ripeness levels by slowing things down a bit with our syrah fruit being harvested in mid-September and the later ripening cabernet sauvignon variety by early November, just a bit later than normal.
Tasting Notes by Jim Gerakaris, CWE - JUSTIN Winery Sommelier
Appearance: Bright, dark purple/ruby core with a black secondary hue, moderate plus viscosity with thick tears showing moderate staining.
Aroma: Richly aromatic with ripe black cherry, cassis with berry jam, vanilla, oak, cracked pepper, smoke, autumn leaf and leather.
Palate: Full bodied with ripe black fruit of cherry, cassis and berry with oak and vanilla elements on the entry with camphor, smoke, leather, black pepper and sweet tobacco on the mid-palate along with pronounced, grippy tannins that continue through the long, fresh finish framed by lingering black fruit. A great balance of rustic with elegant, this is a bold wine that pairs nicely with highly flavored dishes like grilled sausage or roasted root vegetables but has the elegant texture and balance to accompany a filet mignon served with a mushroom wine sauce.
- Varietal Composition:
- 65% Syrah
- 35% Cabernet Sauvignon
- Maturation: Barrel aged for 21 months in 100% French oak (53% new)
- pH: 3.73
- Total Acidity: 0.63 g/100mL
- Alcohol: 15.0% by volume
Hickory and campfire aromas meet with black cherry and pepper on the nose of this blend of 65% Syrah and 35% Cabernet Sauvignon. It lands with strong richness on the palate, delivering flavors of Luxardo cherry, wild sage and smoked beef rib, all wrapped in a lush structure. - Wine Enthusiast Magazine 94 points