Jeb Dunnuck, October 2019
95 POINTS - 2017 SANTA BARBARA COUNTY CHARDONNAY
“A stunning value, the 2017 Chardonnay Santa Barbara County comes from the Sierra Madre and Peake Ranch vineyards and was barrel fermented and aged 18 months in 50% new French oak. It offers a rich, powerful, quintessential California bouquet of orchard fruits, toasted spice, grilled bread, and white flowers. It's a ripe, sexy, yet flawlessly balanced effort that stays balanced, pure, and lengthy. It's a smoking value even at the $40 price point."
95 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
“Coming from the estate vineyard in the Sta. Rita Hills and brought up in slightly more new French oak (60%), the 2017 Chardonnay Peake Ranch Vineyard offers a touch more salty minerality as well as notes of spiced citrus, white currants, exotic flowers, and hints of almond butter. Rich, powerful, beautifully textured, and layered, it's another head-turning effort from this estate."
97 POINTS - 2017 SIERRA MADRE VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
“Possibly the crème of the trio, the 2017 Chardonnay Sierra Madre Vineyard comes from a vineyard in the Santa Maria Valley and was fermented and aged 18 months in 50% new French oak. It offers a terrific bouquet of sautéed orchard fruits, grilled bread, crushed citrus, and toasted hazelnuts. Rich, medium to full-bodied, concentrated, and beautifully textured, it's another thrilling wine from this estate that should be snatched up by readers."
93 POINTS - 2017 STA RITA HILLS PINOT NOIR
“Moving to the 2017 Pinot Noirs, the largest production cuvée is the 2017 Pinot Noir Sta. Rita Hills, which was destemmed and spent 18 months in 50% new French oak. Black cherries, ground herbs, forest floor, and hints of candied violets all emerge from this medium to full-bodied, supple, nicely textured, balanced effort. It's drinking nicely today yet should improve with a year in bottle and keep for 5-7 years."
94+ POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
“From the Sta. Rita Hills estate vineyard, the 2017 Pinot Noir Peake Ranch Vineyard was all destemmed and spent 18 months in 50% new French oak. Its ruby/plum color is followed by notes of black cherries, black raspberries, toasted spices, and flowery incense. With subtle salty minerality, medium to full body, ripe tannins, and nicely integrated acidity, it's going to benefit from a year or two in bottle and should have a decade of longevity."
95 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH JOHN SEBASTIANO VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
“Last of the Pinot Noirs, the 2017 Pinot Noir John Sebastiano Vineyard comes from a larger hillside vineyard located on the eastern edge of the true Sta. Rita Hills region. Destemmed and brought up in 60% new French oak, it's slightly deep purple/ruby-hued and offers a beautiful bouquet of cassis, black raspberries, black cherries, forest floor, ground herbs, and earth. It's a richer, full-bodied effort that has a rounded, sexy texture, ripe tannins, and just loads of charm and character."
93 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH JOHN SEBASTIANO VINEYARD GRENACHE
“The 140-case 2017 Grenache Peake Ranch Vineyard comes all from the estate vineyard in the Sta. Rita Hills and was destemmed and aged 18 months in 50% new French oak. Its deep ruby/purple hue is followed by a pure, floral bouquet of black raspberries, orange blossom, licorice, and ground pepper. It's beautifully polished, has no hard edges, reveals fine tannins, and offers a touch of Pinot Noir-like elegance while staying pure Grenache all the way. It's actually slightly more successful than the 2016 and well worth seeking out."
94 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH BELLIS NOIR
“A 60/40 split of Syrah and Grenache that's from the Estate and John Sebastiano Vineyards in the Sta. Rita Hills, aged 18 months in 50% new oak, the 2017 Bellis Noir John Sebastiano Vineyard sports a borderline opaque, purple color as well as a ripe, sexy style in its black raspberries, melted licorice, ground pepper, and gamey aromas and flavors. Rich, full-bodied, and loaded with fruit, it delivers loads of pleasure while staying balanced, classy, and pure. It's another awesome wine from this team."
92 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH JOHN SEBASTIANO VINEYARD SYRAH
“Lastly, the 2017 Syrah John Sebastiano Vineyard is all destemmed Syrah that saw 18 months in 44% new French oak. Classic Syrah notes of blackberries, black olives, bay leaf, cured meats, lavender, and spice are followed by a rounded, layered, beautifully textured effort that has both freshness and richness. Drink it over the coming 7-8 years or more."
VINOUS, SEPTEMBER 2019
95 POINTS - 2017 JOHN SEBASTIANO VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
“The 2017 Pinot Noir John Sebastiano Vineyard is a fabulous wine. Rich, heady and explosive, with stunning depth, the 2017 JSV is just superb. Readers will have to be patient, as the tannins are imposing at this stage. Dark cherry, lavender, red plum, blood orange and mint infuse the 2017 with tremendous depth and plushness. The 2017 shuts down quickly in the glass, which is probably a good thing for its future prospects. There is so much to like and to look forward to."
94 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH VINEYARD GRENACHE
“The 2017 Grenache Peake Ranch Vineyard is rich, lush and inviting, with superb textural richness and overall intensity. Most importantly, though, the 2017 is flat out delicious. This is an especially rich style, and yet there is plenty of energy as well as nuance to balance things out. This is such a beautiful and compelling wine."
94 POINTS - 2017 BELLIS NOIR
“The 2017 Bellis Noir John Sebatiano Vineyard is a blend of 60% Syrah and 40% Grenache. Inky, textured and wonderfully plush, the 2017 is also remarkably vivid and pulsing with energy. Menthol, spice and plum open up in the glass, but the 2017 remains a touch reticent because of its recent bottling. Even so, it is a terrific wine. With a bit of air, its creamy, expansive personality really comes through nicely."
93 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH VINEYARD PINOT NOIR
“The 2017 Pinot Noir Peake Ranch Vineyard is bright, precise and nicely lifted. Sweet red cherry, plum, rose petal, mint and sweet spice all inform a gracious, silky Pinot Noir built on understatement and nuance. The blend of Hyde and Calera clones works very nicely here. Classy and perfumed, the 2017 has so much to offer. Best of all, it will drink well with minimal cellaring."
93 POINTS - 2017 PEAKE RANCH VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
“The 2017 Chardonnay Peake Ranch Vineyard is a rich, layered wine with remarkable depth for vines that are just in their second year of production. Orchard fruit, lemon confit, white flowers and sweet oak all meld together in this layered, exquisite Chardonnay. The 60% new oak adds depth and complexity in a way that marries well with the underlying character of the wine."
92 POINTS - 2017 SIERRA MADRE VINEYARD CHARDONNAY
“The 2017 Chardonnay Sierra Madre Vineyard is a classy, polished wine made from two picks on the property. Dense, layered and impeccable in its balance, the 2017 offers tremendous richness, with hints of white flowers, mint, white pepper, citrus and orchard fruit that add brightness as well as nuance."
91+ POINTS - 2017 JOHN SEBASTIANO VINEYARD SYRAH
“The 2017 Syrah John Sebastiano Vineyard comes across as wild and unruly, almost like the ranch itself. At present, the powerful tannins are wrestling with intense dark fruit, which makes the wine feel not fully put together. Even so, my impression is that there is quite a bit of potential."
91 POINTS - 2017 SANTA BARBARA COUNTY CHARDONNAY
“The 2017 Chardonnay (Santa Barbara County ) is a gorgeous appellation-level wine. Bright, focused and wonderfully nuanced, the 2017 has so much to offer. The balance of aromatics, fruit and structure is beguiling. Lemon confit, almond, flowers and light tropical notes add complexity, but ultimately the 2017 is a wine to enjoy for its sheer deliciousness. Sierra Madre and Peake Ranch are the fruit sources."
90 POINTS - 2017 STA RITA HILLS PINOT NOIR
“The 2017 Pinot Noir (Sta. Rita Hills) is supple, inviting and loaded with sheer appeal. Succulent red cherry, plum, spice and new leather are all laced together in a beautifully perfumed, super-expressive appellation-level Pinot. Soft contours, silky tannins and floral aromatics all add to the wine's allure."