It was not my intention to open two Mourvedre’s back-to-back, but this thing called to me from the cellar tonight and I answered. Is it different from last night’s Monastrell? Night and day. And this is not something from the blingy throes of #winebro West-side Paso, but solid, perfectly articulated fare from the Templeton Gap out in El Pomar. Black and dense, the inky thinning to turbid-clear at the wide rim. Gaseous marachino hits the nose strong, the vegetal sweet, the briar muddled in ripe black cherry. Grainy pomegranate rules the day, sharp slivers of citrus enlivening and enhancing.
Fresh and alive at 6, the mouthfeel ridiculously polished and pure, everything in place for varietal typicity, but with new-world gasps of wonderfulness killing the edge. This is not a 99%’ers wine–there are far too many things at work here dispelling that shallow attraction. Bitter lemon and orange rind flow freely, the berry so addled by briar and pepper as to reflect chalky angst along the well-fruited lines. But there is a high note of pure Paso Robles moderating this wine: a near-perfect rendition of south-France rough concentration thinned with glorious modicums of rotund. But this thing is NOT your 14-9, 15-7 typical Paso offering. It’s thin and clairvoyant, picking up all the aspects of the variety and transferring them unapologetically onto the tongue. This is a weird grape many will not understand in a solo bottling, and that pretty much defines the wine 1 percent. Smoky diesel and varnished fruit are key here, and if you don’t like those sort of things we can’t be friends. Stupidly good wine.
2016 POMAR JUNCTION Mourvedre El Pomar Dist. Paso Robles 13.7