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Justin Isosceles 2003

Bordeaux Red Blends from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
    0% ABV
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    Winemaker Notes

    Subtle earthy tones combine with a hint of leather aromatically in this deep, inky black hued wine. The entry is soft and subtle with ample black fruit and coffee. Cherry, currant and a hint of plum evolve into layers of chocolate and caramel on the mid-palate. A soft, seamless finish is balanced by flavors of spicy French Oak.

    The vintage began with the warmest winter since 1996. As a result, our grapevines began their growing season 2 weeks earlier than normal. A warm spring followed and in early June, temperatures began to climb and the ripening followed. A few cool spikes in late August allowed the vines to slow down and rest before the critical period prior to harvest. September and October followed with warm consistent weather that ripened our provided and microclimate to ripen the grapes evenly. Merlot, a thin-skinned grape variety was harvested in late September. Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon have much thicker skins, and need more time in the sun to ripen their well-structured tannins. Harvest for these two varieties took place in late October, just before the warm weather ceased.

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    Critical Acclaim

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    Justin

    Justin

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    Justin, Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
    2003 Isosceles
    Justin and Deborah Baldwin acquired their land in 1981 and planted 72 acres in vineyards that same year. Initially they were wine growers, selling to other wineries. Then, in 1987, they harvested their first grapes bottled under the Justin label. Justin Winery concentrates on two Bordeaux styled red wines: Isoscleles, which is a 100% estate blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc and Justification, a blend of Cabernet Franc and Merlot. Varietals are planted to specific soil types on their hillside vineyards 8 miles from the Pacific Ocean, on the Central Coast.

    Paso Robles

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    Paso Robles has made a name for itself as a source of supple, fruity, and powerful wines. With 11 smaller sub-AVAs, there is quite a bit of diversity to be found in this inland portion of California’s Central Coast.

    This is mostly red wine country, with Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel standing out as the star performers. Other popular varieties include Merlot, Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot, and Rhône varieties both red and white. There is a fairly uniform tendency here towards wines that are unapologetically bold and opulently fruity, albeit with a surprising amount of acidity thanks to the region’s chilly nighttime temperatures.

    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/or 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 can be bold and fruit-forward or restrained and earthy, while New World facsimiles tend to emulate the former style. In general, Bordeaux red blends can 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, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or virtually any other grape deemed worthy by the winemaker. In Australia, Shiraz is a common component.

    POE87100_2003 Item# 87100

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