TN: A tale of Two Saxums (both Magnums)


These were intended for a local benefit I participated in. The dinenr wine being served was a value pinotage. I took the liberty of pouring this for my tablemates in lieu of the Pinotage. I was amazed at how quickly we finished the Mag. I didn’t notice the 15+% alcohol, but in the live auction there was heavy bidding from my table including two top bids…

  • 2004 Saxum Heart Stone Vineyard - USA, California, Central Coast, Paso Robles
    I opened this Magnum up about 5 hours before I was planning on consuming it. I have had good luck on the 04’s up until now. The nose was off putting. It had a good amount of VA which I ordinarily like in Saxum as I find it lifts the aromatics. In this case, the aromatics were not worth lifting. Plastic notes and a bit of chemical cleanser notes. Tingling slightly on the palate. I decanted and checked back in three hours later. Perhaps slightly better, but I decided to pop another cork. I left the wine in the decanter over night. The next day it was better but not the wine it should have been. I reflled the original bottle to be sent to the in-laws (where many of my rejects are more appreciated). My wife forgot the bottle so it sits in my cellar, and I will revist tonight. I don’t have great hopes, but perhaps it will be at least drinkable. Oh well, off bottles happen (I just wish it was a 375 and not a Mag). NR (flawed)

  • 2005 Saxum Syrah Bone Rock James Berry Vineyard - USA, California, Central Coast, Paso Robles
    After an off Mag of the 04 Heartstone, i opened a Magnum of this. I did not have time to decant. I poured a couple of ounces and any doubts about the HS being off were laid to rest. This was so much better. I put the cork back in and set off. The bottle was served about 2.5 hours later. Beautiful purple and ruby color. The nose was explosive with black raspberries, bacon fat, blueberries and some black pepper. Full bodied but completely balanced. Juicy texture. Just a great wine. (96 pts.)

Posted from CellarTracker

Read a few notes about 04s that some bottles were re-fermenting. Have also seen notes referring to VA too. That’s a shame. (not sham)

Great notes on the Bone Rock.

We opened an '05 Bone Rock Friday night at dinner and my impression was very similar to yours. It absolutely held it’s own against the '04 Alban Reva and '04 Agharta in the same flight. I gave a slight edge to the Alban but probably because I had decanted it for 4 hours before dinner while the other two were pop and pour. The Agharta and Bone Rock just kept getting better and better as the evening wore on.

I love the 05 Bone Rock. I wanted to save one to see how it developed, but I think I have gobbled all of them up. A great wine.

I also got a bit of tingling on my tongue on a 2004 Heart Stone. I thought it was bottle fermentation. It was not a great wine, but it was not “pour down the drain” swill. I have had other bottles of it that were excellent, including one in the past few months. I think it was bottle variation.

After witnessing and reading about mixed results with the 04’s I drank them all up quick over a year ago. 05 has been my favorite Saxum vintage yet.

Must have been quite an evening! [welldone.gif]