2011 Beckmen "Cuvée Le Bec" Santa Ynez Valley Rhône Blend
The 2011 Cuvee le Bec jumps from the glass. Dark red fruits, flowers, tobacco, mint, licorice and spices all take shape in a vinous, mid weight wine best suited for drinking over the next few years. This is a terrific value from Beckmen, and a great introduction to the house style. Drinking window: 2013 - 2016 This is a solid set of wines from Beckmen. I get the impression a number of these wines could be materially better. It's hard to be too critical of the entry-level offerings, as they deliver good value, but the truth is they could deliver phenomenal value.
Comprised of 46% Syrah, 36% Grenache, 11% Mourvèdre, and 7% Counoise, this 2011 Rhone blend were hand harvested after a long, cool growing season. Modest alcohol and good acidity mark the fresh, aromatic, and structured profile. The wine was aged for 16 months in (15% new French) oak to develop complexity, but not impart too much wood character.