The 2018 Surrealist is a wild, over the top wine, but in all the right ways, if that makes sense. Super-ripe red berry, kirsch, rose petal and sweet spice all race out of the glass. Heady and flamboyant to the core, the 2018 is immensely enjoyable, but readers have to appreciate this style. There is not much subtlety, not much left to the imagination. Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot work so well here. -- Antonio Galloni
JCB by Jean-Charles Boisset Reviews
The 2018 No. 10 offers up an attractive melange of sweet floral and spice notes to play off a core of ripe red berry fruit. This mid-weight wine is a bit tight today, but like all of the 2018s it is done in a heady, flamboyant style. -- Antonio Galloni
The 2018 No. 1 is laced with the essence of raspberry jam, mocha, cedar, rose petal and cinnamon. Rich, silky and opulent, the 2018 offers plenty of immediacy to match its flamboyant style. Drink it over the next decade. -- Antonio Galloni
The 2018 Knockout (Cabernet Sauvignon/Petite Sirah) certainly delivers on its name. Rich, deep and explosive, with tons of supporting energy, the 2018 is a big wine. I would give the formidable Petite tannins a few years to settle down. Inky red/purplish fruit, spice, cedar, new leather and sweet pipe tobacco are all layered into the huge finish. -- Antonio Galloni
The No. 17 (Cabernet Franc) is bursting at the seams with blackberry jam, espresso, chocolate, spice, new leather and menthol. Potent and yet well-balanced for such a big wine, the 2018 has much to recommend it. This ample, full-throttle wine will drink beautifully for another decade or so. -- Antonio Galloni
The 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Phi, a tiny lot of one barrel, is an exciting wine. Inky and opulent to the core, the 2018 races across the palate with striking richness. Inky fruit, chocolate, espresso, sweet French oak and rose petal build in a Cabernet endowed with unctuous intensity in a decidedly flamboyant style. -- Antonio Galloni
Fruity, dense and lush, this is a full-bodied, ripely textured wine that shows varietal earthiness and baking spice. Dark cherry, cola and lavender are lifted by a bite of acidity on the back palate, finishing in toasted vanilla.
Brian Maloney blends this wine from four vineyards in the hills north of the Petaluma Gap — Doña Margarita, Highlands, Ferguson and Fiddler — all windy, fog-influenced sites on sandy soils. Grounded in the cool earth of the coast, this dives into cool fruit, with the flavor of fresh-picked berries. That fruit feels clean and pure, lasting in scents of roses and cardamom, bright and zesty, then deepening into the dark tones of tannins. Its integration gives it richness that feels tied to the intensity of the Pacific, the wine's cool scent lasting into the far distance.
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.
Jean-Charles Boisset’s team blends this wine from cinsault, grenache and syrah sourced from vineyards near Montagne St-Victoire. It’s a smooth rosé, with a corn-silk texture and sleek flavors to match. The notes of sage and aloe conjure up a warm, sunny feeling without conferring excess weight.
Juicy, expansive and generous in cherry cola, orange peel and pomegranate, this is a profoundly rich, round and rewarding wine—a showcase of the varietal that’s hearty in tannin and oak but ultimately balanced in profile.
This has undeniably inviting aromatics of ginger and apple blossom that puncture the nose before unleashing a fleshy full-bodied blend of citrus and tropical flavor on the palate. It’s rich and lush with enough acidity to keep it fresh and lively in the glass.
Medium to deep ruby-purple in color, the 2016 Pinot Noir No. 6 features baked black berry, black cherry and blueberry with notes of soil, violets, charcuterie and savory herbs. Medium to full-bodied with great concentration of fruit in the mouth, it has lots of savory and spicy character, with fine, grainy tannins and a layered finish.
The 2016 Pinot Noir No. 22 is medium to deep ruby-purple with a gregarious nose of baked blackberry and black cherry with savory notions of cracked black pepper, fried herbs, bay leaf and forest floor with potpourri hints. Medium to full-bodied with a soft, silky texture, it offers concentrated savory fruits, grainy-textured tannins and an evolving finish.
Starting with the 2016 Leopard Red Blend (49% Syrah, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Cabernet Franc aged for 20 months in 41% new French oak), this rock star release boasts a saturated purple color as well as a great bouquet of blackberries, currants, crushed rocks, and hints of chocolate. This full-bodied 2016 has fabulous purity, tons of fruit, and a balanced, layered style on the palate. It has two decades of longevity ahead of it.
This is made from 80% Pinot Noir, the remainder Chardonnay, both coming from both the Napa and Sonoma sides of the appellation. Inviting in wild strawberry, it is dry and stony and exuberant in earthy mineral aspects of crushed rock and dried herb.