2009 Tablas Creek "Esprit de Beaucastel" Paso Robles Rhône Blend

SKU #1076102 94 points Jeb Dunnuck

 A final blend of 40% Mourvèdre, 28% Syrah, 27% Grenache, 5% Counoise that's aged all in larger foudre, the 2009 Tablas Creek Esprit de Beaucastel is a beautiful wine that offers up classic, almost Châteauneuf-du-Pape like aromas of meaty black cherry, licorice, loads of spiced meat, and mineral qualities on the nose. Full-bodied and youthfully structured and firm, with bright acidity, solid mid-palate concentration, and a chewy, tannic finish, this superb Paso Robles blend should be given 3-4 years of bottle age, and then consumed over the following 12-15 years. Like many southern Rhône blends, this will be approachable and delicious for a number of years after the vintage, yet won’t hit prime drinking until 7-9 years after the vintage.  (6/2012)

94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 I am thrilled to see the 2009 Esprit de Beaucastel burst from the glass with an exciting melange of dark red cherries, flowers, sweet herbs, mint and spices. Exotic spiced notes linger on the finish. The 2009 boasts serious intensity, richness and depth, but it remains quite tannic and in need of further bottle age. The vintage saw both frost and drought, two conditions that are a little unusual in the same year. Now that it is in bottle, the 2009 meets all of the expectations I had when I tasted it from barrel last year. The blend is 40% Mourvedre, 28% Syrah, 27% Grenache and 5% Counoise. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2024. (AG)  (8/2012)

93 points James Suckling

 A wine that shows a beautiful balance of dark fruits, spices and hints of herbs. Full body yet refined and balanced with refined tannins and a fresh finish.  (11/2011)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Vivid ruby-red. Sexy, highly perfumed aromas of candied raspberry, potpourri, Asian spices, sandalwood and licorice, with zesty minerality emerging with aeration. Suave, fresh and lithe, showing impressive definition and florality to its seamless red fruit flavors. The spicy, very long finish features gentle tannins and a flavor of red raspberry. A very polished blend. (JR)  (10/2011)

92 points Wine & Spirits

 Grown on the calcareous clay hillsides of this estate in western Paso Robles, Esprit is built on Mourvedre, blended with Grenache, Syrah and Counoise. Spring frosts and three years of drought reduced the crop by 30 percent, the vintage yielding fruit that feels concentrated, healthy and cool with wild strawberry and dark red berry freshness. Tannins keep it focused along a chalk line of flavor, expanding into layers of spice and fruit in the middle, then tightening again into a clean finish.  (6/2012)

Wine Spectator

 Well-structured and full-bodied, offering pure, ripe boysenberry, blueberry, mineral and cedar flavors, with a chewy edge to the tannins.(JL, Web-2012)

K&L Notes

The 2009 vintage of Tablas Creek's flagship "Esprit de Beaucastel Rouge" is a blend of 40% Mourvèdre, 28% Syrah, 27% Grenache, and 5% Counoise from their 120-acre certified organic estate vineyard in Paso Robles. The 2009 vintage saw very low yields of small, concentrated berries due to a combination of frosts in April and third-year drought conditions. For this wine, individual varieties are fermented separately in stainless steel with native yeasts and then moved into separate barrels, after which they are blended. The final cuvée is aged in large French oak foudres prior to bottling. Winemaker's notes: "The 2009 Esprit de Beaucastel shows a deep, spicy nose with dark fruit, crushed rock, cocoa and licorice. The palate shows blackberry, black raspberry, and currant fruit highlighted by a persistent minerality, lush texture and substantial but fine-grained tannins. The power of the tannins and the concentration of the wine suggest that it will benefit from short- to mid-term cellaring, and drink well for two decades or more."

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Price: $49.99
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