2013 Ancient Peaks "Margarita Vineyard - Renegade" Paso Robles Red Blend

SKU #1255599 93 points Wine Enthusiast

 The components of this blend change every year, and this vintage of 93% Syrah, 4% Malbec and 3% Petit Verdot shows black cherry paste, crushed purple flowers and vanilla. Juicy blueberry and blackberry decorate the lavish palate, which is lifted by thyme and mint herbs. (MK)  (8/2016)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Lastly, the deep ruby/purple colored 2013 Renegade Margarita Vineyard gives up lots of ripe blackberry, mulberry, spice box and leafy, peppery herbs in its medium to full-bodied, fresh, lively, nicely textured personality. It has notable purity, no hard edges and tons of charm. Drink it over the coming 3-4 years. (JD)  (8/2016)


 Saturated ruby. Ripe black and blue fruit aromas are sharpened by a suggestion of cracked pepper. Lush and open-knit, offering sweet black currant and cherry flavors and hints of menthol and olive. Weighty but energetic, finishing juicy, focused and quite long; velvety tannins lend shape and subtle grip to the plush, lingering dark fruit. (JR)  (9/2016)

K&L Notes

With their Margarita Vineyard, Ancient Peaks has carved out a niche for their estate wines which relibably over-deliver for under $20. The Margarita Vineyard is the only property in the newly recognized Santa Margarita Ranch AVA, which acknowledges its unique climate and terroir nestled in the Santa Lucia Mountains at the southernmost reach of the greater Paso Robles area. This Syrah-dominated blend (with a splash of Malbec and Petit Verdot) was harvested from four distinct vineyard blocks between October 18-24th of the ideal 2013 growing season. The wine was aged in a combination of French and American oak (30% new) for 22 months before bottling. From the winery: "The 2013 Renegade is loaded with heady aromas of boysenberry, blueberry, violets, tobacco and roast coffee. Luscious flavors of blackberry, cola and vanilla cream unfold with suggestions of savory smokiness and spice. A mouthfilling texture delivers plump tannins on a bold, lavish finish."

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Price: $18.99
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- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Paso Robles

- Located about halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, this inland AVA enjoys a sunny and hot growing period while its seaside neighbors hang in the fog. Zinfandel is the traditional red grape of choice, though cabernet, chardonnay, and Rhône varietals are gaining favor. Most are made in a fruit-forward, early drinking style.