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Justin Isosceles Reserve 2014

Bordeaux Red Blends from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
  • WE94
16% ABV
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  • WE94
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16% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Deep ruby-purple core with black hue, lightens to medium intensity at the rim with slow forming, moderately stained tears on the glass. Highly aromatic and very complex with a mix of red and black fruit of cherry and currant, cedar, vanilla, licorice and cinnamon spice with camphor and dry autumn leaf and graphite accents. Full-bodied and compelling with layers of fruit, spice and savory flavors that continue to unfold as the palate evolves. Red and black cherry and blackcurrant fruit layered with complex spice including vanilla, licorice cinnamon and cedar lead the entry. The mid-palate is showy with sustained, complex fruit, savory tobacco leaf and cocoa notes. The finish is fresh, long and complex with black cherry and camphor beautifully integrated with savory elements and framed with mouth-filling, fine tannins that balance the wine’s rich palate and predict a good future in the cellar… if you can save a bottle or two for a few years. Full and complex, the 2015 ISOSCELES has a freshness that will perfectly balance richer foods like slowly braised beef short ribs, or oxtail stew, but will pair beautifully with an aged, prime ribeye steak.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 94
Wine Enthusiast
There is a focused intensity of black plum, elderberry and black-cherry pie on the nose of this blend of 82% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 4% Malbec. A ripe blackcherry flavor meets with licorice, vanilla and fudge on the palate, where polished tannins provide ample structure
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Justin

Justin

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Justin, California
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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.
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Paso Robles

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Paso Robles has made a name for itself as a source of supple, powerful, fruit-driven wines wines. But with eleven smaller sub-AVAs, there is actually quite a bit of diversity to be found in this inland portion of California’s Central Coast.

Just east over the Santa Lucia Mountains from the chilly Pacific Ocean, lie the coolest in the region: Adelaida, Templeton Gap and (Paso Robles) Willow Creek Districts, as well as York Mountain AVA and Santa Margarita Ranch. These all experience more ocean fog, wind and precipitation compared to the rest of the Paso sub-appellations. The San Miguel, (Paso Robles) Estrella, (Paso Robles) Geneso, (Paso Robles) Highlands, El Pomar and Creston Districts, along with San Juan Creek, are the hotter, more western appellations of the greater Paso Robles AVA.

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, Syrah, Grenache and Rhône blends, both red and white. There is a fairly uniform tendency here towards wines that are unapologetically bold and opulently fruit-driven, albeit with a surprising amount of acidity thanks to the region’s chilly nighttime temperatures.

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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.

PIN899379_2014 Item# 506324