Michael Gill goes for broke booze-wise on this hot number, but the rewards are worth the risk. Aromas of blueberry, mint, graphite, dried cherry, lilac and graphite get a sagebrush lift. On the palate, distinct black licorice accompany blackberry syrup and white pepper. There's a slight bit of alcoholic burn on the finish, but it doesn't drink as hot as you'd guess.
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.