2005 Saxum 44 Month Barrel Age James Berry Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+

This was an experiment Justin Smith did back in 2005.  He let the wine stay in barrels for 44 months before bottling it.  This extended ageing as it is called is interesting.  One might think the wine would be ready earlier but conversely, it seems to take even longer for the wines to be ready to drink.  This one is now in a great place and if you have one, consider popping the cork.  A GSM blend, but mostly Syrah.  Purple in color.  The nose is great with black raspberries, iodine, decayed meats, leather, slight bacon fat and an earthy/musk.  On the palate, this has a wonderful lightness a

2011 Saxum Broken Stones, USA, California, Paso Robles Wine Review

Vintage: 
2011
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

For most newer vintages of Saxum, they need 10 years of cellaring to get close to maturity.  The 2011's are, however, a bit more precocious.  This one was firing on all cylinders.  Inky purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, slight bacon fat, roasted meats, and white pepper.  On the palate, this has a wonderful texture.  Light on its feet, but packing a punch.  Great boysenberry fruit.  An underlying pepperyness.  Long finish.  Worked great with grilled foods.  There is still some upside to holding this, but its drinking beautifully right now.  

2010 Saxum James Berry Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2010
Score: 
98
Grade: 
A+

From Magnum.  Inky purple in color.  The nose is great with black raspberries, plums, grilled meat, white pepper and char.  On the palate, this has an incredible texture.  Smooth and velvety yet powerful and muscular.  Notes of black raspberries, spice and slight charred earth.  This is deep and complex yet still has a long life left.  This vintage has opened and shut a few times since release but seem like it has settled and is open.  There is a lot of alcohol but it doesn't show up anywhere in the glass.  One of those wines that each sip makes you want to have another.  Spectacular wine. 

2009 Saxum Syrah Booker Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2009
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+

Having had the 2006 just a few days prior to this, it was surprising how much younger and tighter this was.  It does seem like there was a bit of a style shift starting in 2007 and rather than the wines really opening up at age 5, it is now closer to 10.  This one took a few hours to really open and then was singing if still on the youthful side.  Inky purple in color.

2006 Saxum Syrah Booker Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2006
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

Great showing for this wine and in a great place.  Probably not yet at peak though.  Who says these wines won't age?  Inky purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, roasted meats, slight roasted herbs and char.  Not a super ripe wine, but certainly plenty of bold black raspberry fruit on the palate.  Deep and complex.  Tightly layered, it unwinds in the glass.  Fruit, char and grilled herbs.  Smooth.  Long finish.  Plenty of alcohol, the label lists 16.6%, but no heat.  It is noticeable in the lush texture and of course, standing up.  Just a gorgeous wine.  Not sure that this will g

2007 Four Vines Zinfandel ZinBitch, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2007
Score: 
90
Grade: 
A-

From Magnum.  Ruby in color, opaque and flat.  The nose is dusty with cedar and black cherries.  On the palate, this is older and starting to get tired.  There is a tart acidity.  Black cherry fruit and slight dried cherries.  Not sure what this was like in its youth but now it is more claret in style.  Drinking well right now with fruit and complexity.  That said, drink up as this will start to slide soon.  Works with a wide variety of foods.  

2013 Epoch Estate Wines Veracity, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2013
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

This is a GSM blend.  Purple in color.  The nose is great with black cherries, cherries, black raspberries, floral notes, slight earthiness, black pepper and spice.  On the palate, this is lush and deep.  Almost but not quite jammy.  Medium tannins.  This is still young and in need of time to delineate its complexity.  Right now it is fun and delicious.  Depends on how you like them.  Probably another 10 years to get to peak.  

2012 Torrin Akasha, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
97
Grade: 
A+

Torrin is one of the most underrated wines out of California.  Maybe underrated is not the right word.  I just don't understand why it doesn't get the buzz it deserves.  To my mine it is one of the five top wineries producing Rhone varietals in California.  Yes, the wines are big, but so far, they seem to be ageing just fine.  This one is fantastic.  These are big, warm climate Syrahs that are similar in style to SQN or Saxum.  Purple in color.  The nose is great with black raspberries, grilled meats, and hot tar.  On the palate, this is lush with lots of fruit and medium tannins.  Black ra

2014 Denner Syrah, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A

Purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, blueberries, spice, slight grilled meats and black pepper.  On the palate, this is a bit more restrained than I expected but still outstanding.  Black raspberries, blueberries, and slight earthiness.  With air some charred earth as well.  Nice texture.  Some complexity.  Enough acidity to work with hearty foods.  Good finish.  There is plenty of fruit and slight tannins; this seems like it might improve or it might just age out.  Either way it easily has a decade or more left.  

2012 Saxum James Berry Vineyard, USA, California, Paso Robles, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2012
Score: 
96
Grade: 
A

I love Saxum, they are certainly one of my top favorite wineries.  But, over the years, their styles have changed.  Presumably, that has been consistent with owner/winemaker Justin Smith's preferences changing.  For my tastes, 2012 was another year of change in styles.  The wines became a bit more intense and need a decade to really strut their stuff.  That said, with a bit of air, this one was delicious at six years from vintage.  Deep purple in color.  The nose has black raspberries, leather, roasted meat and black pepper.  On the palate, this has a great texture.  It is packed with delic

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