The irony of the Livermore Valley is that it’s still an under-the-radar wine region, in spite of it being one of the oldest planted areas to vineyards in California. So it’s really no surprise that gems are hidden there. A case in point is this Coccineous (which translates as “scarlet”), a blend of 43% Tempranillo, 36% Petite Sirah, along with small amounts of Syrah and Malbec. Though currently on the market this 2013 defies its age and is drinking incredibly well. It offers mature notes of black berry, raspberry, cedar, black cherry, with back notes of mulberry, pomegranate and quiet notes of rhubarb. There’s a still vibrant acidity, and harmonious balance. Using a mere 30% new French and American oak, the balance between fruit and wood is impressive. This wine is also a rather unique look into a blend that seems it shouldn’t work on paper, but does work in the glass and on the palate, a wine that takes you off guard and makes you believe in small producers who toil away in the far reaches of the industry. It also shows how large distribution networks often overlook the little guy, ignoring intriguing wines with small production. Fortunately, Las Positas will keep making their wine.
ORIGIN: Livermore Valley, California
PRICE: $48/ 750 ML
Limited availability, 290 cases.