Creamy and round in the nose: almost a tahini nuttiness with touches of buttered popcorn. This all plays well into a bit of cellar-floor and barnyard–extremely light–with dank floral eclipsing the concentrated black cherry driving everything. I’m feeling like this might not be dominantly Cab–but also doesn’t come off particularly cab-franc or PV-driven: two varieties common in Paso BDX blends–and Merlot is a fairly rare bird in the region, but I suppose anything’s possible. It does feel like Merlot though–the lushness and dull vibrancy points that direction–meatiness rules the bouquet, and briar, pepper and spice somewhat lost in the blend. Decanted rambunctiously, and the pretty rosiness shines forth. It’s a dark, thick beast in the glass, with a slight rim and significant legs.
Tasting it directs one again to a ME-heavy blend, but with a peppery twist. Chalky and young on one hand, the lavish luxury of the berry and stone-fruit twist your mind away. Acid seems a bit low, but it is well-structured and drinking fabulously at 4. More richness and roundness express themselves in the mouth, and while it isn’t a significantly *complex* wine, it has all the licks of an impressive right-bank–though an alcoholic one. An impressive amount of tannin–if it does turn out to be Merlot–and the fruit has a hard time keeping up in the finish, but puts up a valiant effort between the alcohol and sheer chubby concentration. It goes a bit vague at the end and I’m torn between ‘more age’ or ‘drink-em-young’. You make the call.
This little winery up in Adelaida District continues to impress, and any fan of Paso Robles should seek them out. No, let me re-phrase that: Any fan of the region disappointed with some of the other offerings should seek them out. They are NOT your typical Paso.
2017 RANGELAND ‘The Watershed’ ME/Cab/PV/CF 36/32/16/16 Adelaida Dist. Paso Robles 15.3