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, 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 2018 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.
“Blackberry and asphalt aromas with some violets and rose petals. Medium to full body. Some carbon to the dark fruit. Tasty and delicious. Chewy now, but we like it already. Drinkable now, but will improve with age.”
93 points, JamesSuckling.com, Jan 2020