Plenty of wines claim to capture the “spirit of California”. A top-bracket nomination for that honour is winemaker Andy Erickson and viticulturist Annie Favia’s Leviathan. Their deft touch shows: Leviathan is a rich, full wine that is almost miraculously light on it’s feet. Comprised of Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc in 2014, this is a small-production wine that highlights the complexity derived from sound blending and careful handling. Each vintage is finely-tuned, intended to be bright and fruit-driven in its youth, yet entirely worthy of cellaring.
The 2014 vintage captures all the best qualities of that year’s stellar growing season, when a warm, dry spring gave way to early budbreak, balanced canopy growth, and small, intense berries. This concentrated wine is brimming with aromatics of cigar box, brambly fruit, and cacao. The palate gives way to a balanced expression of cherries, violets, and Japanese pickled plums, with savoury tannins and outstanding finesse and complexity.
“Displays intense black fruit with savoury aromas of pepper and sage. The palate gives way to an even-keeled expression of cherries, violets, umeboshi (pickled plums), savoury tannins and licorice. This is a wine to be enjoyed now and anytime over the next decade.”
95 points + “Classic”, California Wine Advisors, 2018
“Made by Screaming Eagle’s former winemaker, this is full-on and bold right from the start. Bacon, smoke, prune and peony hit the nose, and the palate follows up with juicy ripeness coated in that aromatic, cured meat style of smoke. This is visceral, uncompromising and mouth-filling. Very fine tannins dry the mouth, and alcoholic warmth does the rest. Has some Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Franc in the blend alongside the Cabernet Sauvignon.”
92 points, Decanter, May 2018