Justin Vineyards & Winery exemplifies the flavorful and robust reds of Paso Robles, California. I was fortunate to attend a Paso Robles CAB Collective tasting event last summer during the Wine Bloggers Conference. You can bet that I made a beeline for the Justin table.
The goal of Justin is to produce world-class Bordeaux-style blends. The limestone rich soil of their Paso Robles vineyards stresses the vines, resulting in grapes that richly express their varietal nature. The hot days and cool nights result in wines with great structure.
Luckily, all of the coolness of Justin – the soil, the old world techniques, the great terroir of Paso – all ends up in the bottle. Isosceles is a signature wine that in 2011 celebrates its 25th vintage.
We enjoyed a terrific meal with friends Larry and Donna at the Final Cut restaurant at the Hollywood Casino in Toledo. The service and décor are impeccable and the food is stellar.
Although we had a couple of seafood entrees in our group, we opted to “go big or go home” with this bottle of Justin Isosceles. The Paso style has bright fruit flavors and so it paired better with the lighter dishes than a heavy Napa Cab would.
The 2011 Isosceles is a blend of 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, and 7% Cabernet Franc. The wine has excellent structure without dense tannins. The profile is elegant flavors of black cherry, vanilla and red fruit with sprinkles of cedar. On the palate it is rounded and plush.
Isosceles runs about $72 (significantly more than that at a nice restaurant), but all thoughts of anything as crass as money melt away as you sip this divine bottle. The winery also offers some other entertaining blends in its Signature line that are worth checking out. There are lower cost options too.
Isosceles has now joined the ranks of our favorites. You’re invited to try it as well. We think you’ll like this angle on winemaking.
Rating: 5 of 5 Value: 3.5 of 5