This is the FIRST wine I ever ordered at a restaurant on the Central Coast when I moved here, basically 20 years ago. It was at Steamers in Pismo Beach, with my now ex-wife and her parents. You have to understand: I had very little knowledge of Paso Robles or Santa Barbara wines, even being completely immersed in the Nor-Cal wine scene for a couple decades. I had seen Liberty School, and ABC, and a couple others, but that was about it. So I ordered a Treana lurking at-or-near the bottom of the list. I remember being a bit puzzled by the chubby, warm nuances of it, and distinctly recall thinking, “This is one of the area’s flagships???” I have a funny feeling the ’98 or ’99 I was probably drinking has morphed a bit in style since, as the exploding demographic of a burgeoning area has dictated by their palate: intrinsically connected to their pocket-books. I tasted a double-mag of ’96 Treana a couple years back with Austin and is was amazing. But hey: ya gotta sell wine!
Black, impenetrable purple-ruby, stupendously staining the glass and drooling heavy, perfectly-spaced legs. The nose blasts warm black cherry and crushed September blackberry into your face, furniture oil and thick vanilla worked well into the creases. Gobstoppingly ripe and thickened with dessert-y syrup, leather and cigar race grenadine and Luxardo for the decadent sweepstakes, a welcome waft of chocolate earth providing much-needed complexity.
In the mouth, blood-orange rules all, coating the palate with ripe acidity and a certain spice betrayal to a mouthfeel you assumed super-charged with Paso sunshine and French slivers. I don’t know what the blend is, but with Merlot being fairly rare in SLOco, Syrah is a safe bet. And here it works well, polishing the Cab and fluffing it with fruit without detracting from spicy complexities or chalky angst. Requisite Cabernet impressions of tannin curl receptors in proper black-walnut fashion throughout, the sweetness again making an unmistakable statement in the finish.
2018 TREANA ‘Red’ Cab/SY 75/25 Paso Robles 15.0