2020 Saxum 'Heart Stone Vineyard'
Paso Robles, California
33% Graciano, 31% Grenache, 19% Syrah, 9% Mataro, 5% Touriga Nacional, 3% Petite Sirah. 15.6% alcohol. 687 cases made.
93-95 points, Jeb Dunnuck. "Another full-bodied, mouth-filling substantial wine offering plenty of dark, chocolaty fruit, some smoked herb and graphite nuances, a big mid-palate, and some chewy tannins."
Winemaker notes: "Bright red fruit really lifted by the use of Graciano as the lead here. Exotic aromatics.... Think Moroccan spices. Very focused. Long finish with dusty tannins. I'm sure many of you have heard the woes of 2020. Fires devastated the entire West Coast of the U.S. Nobody was spared, but fortunately the vineyards of Paso were not hit too hard. The closest fire to us was up in Monterey County, which is about 90 miles north. Nonetheless, we approached the 2020 vintage very carefully in the cellar by running every possible type of analysis to detect damage from the smoke that was occasionally thick in the air that summer. Although a couple of the lots were suspect, everything else was clean. Phew!"