Monday, December 24, 2012

Two Blockbuster Paso Robles Blends

2008 Linne Calodo Slacker, Paso Robles - 70% Syrah, 25% Grenache and 5% Mourvedre. Dark, slightly cloudy crimson color. Super extracted blackberry and black pepper nose with hints of sweet Provencal herb. Quite smooth on the palate with lots of tart blackberry flavor. Tannins are already nicely resolved. Good acidity with a heady vanilla finish. Seems a bit more polished and restrained than the handful of other wines I've had from this producer. 15.3% alcohol...and it shows. Outstanding with the food, so-so on its own. Normally $50, on closeout for $15.

2008 Four Vines Anarchy, Paso Robles - 36% Zinfandel, 35% Mourvedre and 29% Syrah - Opens with earthy Mourvedre-influenced aromas and flavors that gradually give way to sweet cherry and maple/brown sugar notes. Quite a remarkable transformation in this regard. Seamless and harmonious on the cherry- and raspberry-tinged palate and an impossibly long, luscious finish. Hides the 15.0% alcohol quite well. Much more enjoyable on its own. Normally $30, but purchased on sale for $20. Note: at the time, this wine was being produced by the Four Vines Winery. The Four Vines label has since been sold and current vintages of this wine are produced and marketed by Cypher Winery.

The embarrassment of riches continues with tonight's meal of seared tournados of venison backstrap with a blackberry demi-glace sauce, wild rice and roasted asparagus. As I mentioned above, the Linne Calodo was my preferred wine with the food, but after dinner the Four Vines really came into its own. You really couldn't go wrong with either wine.

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