These quirky labels mark a stylish shift in Temecula, where traditional branding has long reigned, yet the wine is as solid as ever. This blend of 64% Petite Sirah, 13% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc, 7% Shiraz and 4% Cabernet Sauvignon shows dried black currant, turned loam, dark chocolate dust and dried mint aromas. The flavors are reminiscent of classic Old World bottlings, with cedar, dried herb and stewed plum laced with fresh acidity and a dry texture.
A fifth generation Californian originally from San Jose, Matt Kettmann covers California’s Central Coast and South Coast for the magazine. He is also the senior editor of The Santa Barbara Independent, where he’s worked since 1999, has written for the New York Times, Time Magazine, Wine Spectator, and Smithsonian, and co-founded New Noise Santa Barbara, a music festival.Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.