Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com
Tasting Date: 11/31/2019
Brought up in half new barrels, the 2017 Paderewski Vineyard has closed down substantially since I tasted it from barrel and is a big, rich, chewy effort as well as one of the more structured and tannic wines in the lineup. Loads of blueberry and mulberry fruits as well as notes of ground pepper, herbs, and graphite give way to a full-bodied 2017 that has good acidity, a more tight, backward feel on the palate, and a great finish. Hide bottles for 2-3 years. Saxum’s Justin Smith has hit a home run with these recent vintages, and his 2015s, 2016s, 2017s, and 2018s all have singular styles, with the quality remaining sky-high. The 2018s show the slightly more pure, fresh, yet concentrated style of the vintage nicely. While not yet bottled, these will offer pleasure in their youth as well as benefit from short term cellaring. The 2017s are more pretty, perfumed wines that don’t quite have the density of the 2016s yet certainly don’t lack for fruit. Most are already drinking nicely today, yet as with all great wines, they’re going to evolve gracefully. Lastly, the 2016s are some of the greatest wines I’ve tasted from this estate, and they offer massive, layered, yet impeccably balanced profiles that are a joy to drink today; they’ll also be a joy to drink in 10-15 years as well. As I’ve written more than once, there are few mailing lists worth being one, but without a doubt, this is one of them.
Perfect Provenance. Purchased directly from Saxum Vineyards in 2019.