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Jonata Fenix 2012

Bordeaux Red Blends from Ballard Canyon, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
  • RP95
  • JS94
14.5% ABV
  • RP93
  • V93
  • JD92
  • RP96
  • V94
  • RP93
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

A deft balancing act between luscious black fruit and herbal notes of black olive and fresh mint—the two sides of Merlot. Currently the softest and most expansive on the palate with loads of blackberry leading the way. Velvet. Remarkably long finish that echoes the depth of fruit. Textured for immediate drinking pleasure, but structured also to reward a decade in the cellar.

Blend: 69% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot

Critical Acclaim

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RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
There are roughly 200 cases of the sensational 2012 Fenix. A blend of 69% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc and the balance Petit Verdot, it reveals a Bordeaux-like perfume of black cherries, plums, tobacco leaf, leather and damp soil. Full-bodied, supple and more elegant than powerful, it still has terrific density and length on the palate, with ample sweet tannin. I'd happily drink it today, but savvy readers would ideally give it 2-4 years of bottle age and drink bottles through 2032.
Rating: 95+
JS 94
James Suckling
A predominately merlot blend with cabernet franc, the red shows perfume and balance with black olive and dark fruit. Full body, velvety tannins and a salty, savory, and iodine.
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Jonata

Jonata

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Jonata, Ballard Canyon, Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
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Jonata is 600 acres of gorgeous, golden hills: eighty of which were meticulously selected based on their unique microclimates and soild profiles, then divided into more than fifty blocks and sub-blocks - each matched with different rootstocks, clones and planting densities - to provide winemaker, Matt Dees, with the broadest palette from which to blend the distinctive wines of Jonata.

Ballard Canyon

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Accounting for only ten percent of the greater Santa Ynez AVA, Ballard Canyon’s north-south orientation provides an ideal pattern of sunshine and martime fog for producing excellent Syrah. While Syrah is planted to half of the total AVA acreage, an additional third is dedicated to other Rhone varieties.

Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

YAO373444_2012 Item# 373444