TN: 2010 Halcon - "Esquisto" (USA, California, North Coast, Yorkville Highlands)

2010 Halcon Vineyards Mourvedre Esquisto - USA, California, North Coast, Yorkville Highlands (7/9/2015)
– popped and poured –
– tasted non-blind over a couple days –
– 100% Mourvedre –

NOSE: very peppery — stemmy; not funky.

BODY: medium-light to medium bodied.

TASTE: savory; stemmy, which I enjoy; speaks most of its stems. A bit better on Day 2, when it showed less stemmy and more of a dried herbs character; alc. not noticeable; maybe it’s just the stems interfering, but this comes across more like a Syrah than a Mourvedre. I like this wine, and would feel comfortable Drinking Now through 2020. Decant for an hour or two if opening a bottle now.

Thanks. I keep wondering about these.

Wondering in what way?

Can’t speak for Loren, but I’ve been wondering if these structured wines have softened almost 5 years from the harvest. The syrahs are really good with some air. Have not popped a cork on one of these yet. I know, what am I waiting for? Maybe tonight with some grilled Tri-Tip. [cheers.gif]

Typed up a report, got a crazy bunch of code crap, review disappears. Short story. Great wine with dinner, not for the purple drank folks. I like it. [cheers.gif]


I was tasting with a somm in Napa today. He had our 2013 Alturas Syrah next to our 2013 Esquisto (60% Mourvedre/40% Grenache). His comment was that there was more site specific commonality then difference between the varieties.

That may well be true, although I’m not sure it’s site vs wine making style.

Whichever it is however, the Petite Sirah is about as good as you get with PS. And of course, also has much in common with the others.

Much as I love Syrah, that PS is every bit as good and even more interesting because somehow we end up with complexity out of a grape that tends to be monolithic.

Good job Paul.

GregT- were you referring to the 2013 Tierra Theopolis PS? Or the 2012? Or both? [cheers.gif]

Interesting, Paul. Did the somm expand on that thought, or did he just leave it at that?

How much stems did you use on this '10 Esquisto, if you recall?


He commented that there were very similar acids, overall structure, minerality (a know, what does that exactly mean?), peppery spiceness and a floral quality.
No stems in in the 2010 Esquisto. We used 1/3 whole-cluster on the 2014 Esquisto for the first time.
I tasted a barrel sample of 2014 Syrah made from our fruit (a friend who took half a ton). It had been fully destemmed but had that floral, dried herb quality that I would have sworn was whole-cluster derived.

Wow! No stems on the '10, huh?!? that absolutely astounds me — so, do you reckon that’s the fruit character I am perceiving, or some kind of influence from the barrels?

Old, neutral barrels, so do not think that is it. I think it is the fruit.

Dang. This is significantly changing my perspective on a whole lot of wines …

Thanks for the info, Paul. [cheers.gif]

I’d guess that character came from the skins, which is a good reason understand a great site to optimize picking.

Alan - it was the 2013. I didn’t write any notes when I had the 2012 but I bought the 2013 based on it. Halcon is my new favorite winery in CA. If I get my hands on some more, I’m taking them to Europe when I go in the fall. Really well-done wines.

Greg, I’d be happy to hand carry some more directly from Paul to you when we come to SD in a few weeks.

2010 Halcon Vineyards Mourvedre Esquisto - USA, California, North Coast, Yorkville Highlands (6/4/2018)
– decanted immediately before first taste –
– tasted non-blind over 4 hours –
– 100% Mourvedre –

NOSE: savory/stemmy (but this was 100% destemmed, so not literally stemmy); light crayon note; blackberry with a hint of earthiness.

BODY: lots of sediment present; garnet-violet color of great depth; medium bodied.

TASTE: initial brett – horsey – but this did lessen over the course of four hours, so maybe just reductive?; medium to medium+ acidity; dark fruited; not tannic; not thick/gloppy; strong garrigué; not overtly oaky. Drinking well now, but will continue to hold just fine over the next few years; I wouldn’t bank on this getting much better with additional age, however.

Thanks for the tasting note, Brian!!!

A 100% Mourvèdre from Halcón would be a great thing to try!!

Funny you mention that Drew - we are bottling a 2017 100% estate Mourvedre today. Only 70 cases, that we will offer to the mailing list early next year.

Yay!!! :slight_smile:

That’s got to be a fascinating wine: a Mourvèdre grown at the very limit of it’s ability to produce ripe fruit, right?