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j.brix wines: Les Garagistes


2011 Vin Gris of Grenache 
Santa Barbara Highlands Vineyard                                                                               Fermented in 1 neutral French Oak barrel                                                                 25 cases produced

It was a late winter evening when I opened and shared this wine. As I took in the aromas and ventured my first sip, it was as if Spring suddenly swept through, and brightened up the room…

A pale salmon hue, glowing with unabashed vibrance.

Very strong mineral aromatics, hints of green melon, strawberry, hardy kiwi, pink sage, rosehip and hibiscus. The lithe character of this wine is supported by whispers of neutral barrel spice. Every steely sip is wrapped in soft crushed floral notes and supplanted by tart, brûléed grapefruit pith.

The palate is like Spring: it blossoms.

At first bracing and intense, it is laced with take-no-prisoners minerality and acidity. Tart but welcomely so, quickly widening in the middle with tense but creamy fruit – tart strawberry, wild cherry, mandarine. In an instant, it becomes rounder, almost luscious and certainly vibrant, with saline, floral and green mango flavors before slowly retreating back into a knife edge of citrus-rock essence. And with that, the bottle is empty, the story told.

No nonsense, an überfresh, pure and REAL bit of uncontainable vinous intensity.

I thoroughly enjoyed it with a simple arugula salad with Extra Vigin Olive Oil, a fried farm egg, cracked black pepper and freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

It tasted of Spring…’Tis the season, right?

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Rose season approaches, better get this one while you can.