I drink a lot of “light” whites–including rosé–which people immediately say I should have dranken younger. I don’t agree–on almost all cases–but here we have something showing a patina far out-weighing its 3-year-old label. It’s glorious wine, one showing deep yellow in the glass and carrying dusty, rubbed-leather carmelization of fruit and concentrated polish, something more akin to Roussanne or Marsanne or even Viognier with a decade or more on it. Did I drink it too late? I suppose if you are looking for clear-white, bright & tight acidic versions of the variety: in those catagories it is definitely an outlier, but you can’t fault the wine at this juncture for merely maturing into a tertiaried bird. Because it’s a beautiful wine–just not the GB most are used to.
Tasting it continues the path down an age-ed course. Thick and elegant on the tongue, the fruit going ways of worn velvet theatre seats and wood with years of oil and calloused caresses. Sharp mineral grip the sides, letting the pear-sauce and peach-preserves do their sweet thing grappling with the bitter finish of virile structure. Obligatory green-vegetal notes run strawberry-rhubarb, an entirely savory experience encompassing wet wood and piles of smoky leaf-rakings. This would be an amazing wine to blind: a Stump The Chumps sorta thing where visions of carefully aged Rhone varieties would garner the most votes. Here, it’s just a simple Grenache Blanc, but one pulling out all the mature stops. The current offering is only a year younger, so this is NOT a forgotten vintage in the cellar. It’s just Grenache Blanc for grown-ups.
2019 CIRCLE B VINEYARDS Grenache Blanc Paso Robles 13.2