Smoky black fruits, tobacco, and coffee bean notes emerge from the 2018 Passion Red Blend, another rich yet elegant wine from winemaker Stephanie Putnam. Possessing medium to full-bodied richness as well as the purity and freshness that are the hallmark of the vintage, it should evolve nicely for 2-4 years and keep for over a decade. The blend is 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc, and the rest Petit Verdot, all aged in 35% new French oak.
Passion by JCB Reviews
The 2017 Passion Red Blend is a beauty based mostly on Cabernet Sauvignon (56%) and Cabernet Franc (22%), yet has small amounts of Merlot, Malbec, and Petit Verdot. It’s a medium to full-bodied, nicely textured, balanced red that has plenty of dark, chocolaty fruit as well as complex forest floor, herbal, and earthy notes. This terrific wine should evolve for at least a decade.
The 2017 JCB Passion is blended of 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Cabernet Franc, 9% Merlot, 8% Petit Verdot and 5% Malbec. It was aged in 25% new French oak and bottled unfined and unfiltered. Deep garnet-purple in color, it takes a little coaxing to reveal youthful notes of freshly crushed black cherries, mulberries and red and black plums with hints of candied violets and chocolate mint plus wafts of underbrush and cedar chest. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has wonderful vivacity, elegance and freshness, framed by grainy tannins and finishing on a floral note.
The 2016 Passion Red Blend is another beauty and checks in as mostly Cabernet Sauvignon blended with 19% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot. This full-bodied, ripe, sweetly fruited effort has loads of jammy blackberry fruits, licorice, saddle leather, and graphite in its layered, charming, opulent profile. It’s already drinking great yet has another 15-20 years of prime drinking.
A blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot aged 20 months in 56% new French oak, the 2016 JCB Passion Proprietary Red is deep garnet-purple colored with lovely red currants, kirsch, black cherries and mulberries scents with hints of pencil lead, cigar box, underbrush and moss. The palate is full-bodied, concentrated, flamboyant and lively with a velvety frame, finishing long and earthy. 683 cases produced.
A blend of 90% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Petit Verdot, the deep garnet-purple colored 2015 JCB Passion Proprietary Red opens with a crème de cassis, char-grilled meat, garrigue and sautéed herbs-scented nose with notions of Indian spices, pepper and potpourri plus a touch of yeast extract. The medium-bodied palate is elegant, fresh, floral and finely textured, finishing long with some spices coming through. 1,468 cases were made.
The 2014 Proprietary Red Passion, which spent 17 months in 42% French oak and is a blend of 73% Cabernet Sauvignon and 27% Merlot, exhibits a complex, fragrant nose of unsmoked cigar tobacco, chocolate, camphor, vanillin and oodles of blackcurrant and blackberry fruit. It is long, rich, sensual, lush and best consumed over the next 12-15+ years.