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PAUL LATO SYRAH/GRENACHE "KOKORO", SANTA BARBARA COUNTY 2013
The 2013 Syrah/Grenache Kokoro is one of the best wines in this range. Grenache aromatics meld into a core of super-expressive Syrah fruit in a racy, beautifully layered red built on texture. All the elements fall into place. Forward and juicy, yet with plenty of underlying structure, the 2013 should drink well for a number of years. Ideally, readers should be prepared to give the 2013 at least another year in bottle. The 2013 is a blend of fruit from Bien Nacido and Larner. The Syrah/Grenache is arguably the pick of the litter in 2013.
Checking in as a mix of 75% Syrah from Bien Nacido and 25% Grenache from Larner, with the Syrah raised in new oak and the Grenache in 50% new oak (it was blended just before bottling), the 2013 Syrah / Grenache Kokoro has tons of Bien Nacido characteristics in its smoky, mineral, peppery and meaty black fruits. This gives way to a supple, pure and elegant wine that has fine tannin, no hard edges and a silky finish that drops off just a touch quickly. Drink this total sexpot of a wine over the coming 5-6 years.
NVWE Notes: If clearly youthful, this wine already seems creamy-rich to the nose, where scents of Italian Maraschino cherry, black raspberry, plum crisp, crab apple syrup, strawberry cobbler, pink rose, pink peppercorn, ginger snap, sandalwood and anise find a bright, graceful harmony. The is more immediate impact on the palate, as a sinewy-sappy texture brings piquancy and cutting clarity to mid-palate flavors that are a slightly more savory-edged mirror of the nose. The wine’s notably long finish layers a veneer of sandalwood, coriander and star anise over wonderfully charming red raspberry, cherry cream sickle, strawberry cobbler, violet, sumac and pink peppercorn flavors. Already a joy, this beauty should be mature in four to eight years. A blend of 75% Syrah & 25% Grenache.