The 2016 Tablas Creek Esprit de Tablas is a blend of four estate-grown varietals, propagated from budwood cuttings from the Chateau de Beaucastel estate. The wine is based on the dark red fruit, earth, spice and mid-palate richness of Mourvedre, with additions of Grenache for forward fruit, approachability and lushness, Syrah for mineral, aromatics, and back-palate tannins, and Counoise for brambly spice and acidity. It has a deep nose, marked equally by Mourvedre and Syrah: mocha and currant reduction, chalky minerality and spicy eucalyptus. The mouth is dense yet not heavy, with flavors of sugarplum and rare steak, a reverberating red/black licorice note, and tremendous texture. The long finish, with lingering flavors of wood smoke, roasted meat, plum skin and crushed rock, hints at more rewards to come with cellar aging. The winery recommends drinking either 2018-2021 or again starting in 2024 any time over the subsequent two decades.
Varietal Composition: 46 Mourvedre, 31 Syrah, 18 Grenache, 5 Counoise
Appellation: Paso Robles AVA, Adelaida District
Aging: 12 months in French oak foudres
The grapes for this wine were grown in the winery's certified organic estate vineyard.
(94-95) Points - Vinous
"Bright violet. Smoke-accented cherry and blackberry aromas are complemented by suggestions of candied licorice, musky rhubarb and cracked pepper. Chewy and broad on entry and then tighter in the midpalate, offering concentrated dark berry preserve and spicecake flavors and a sweet touch of candied violet. Closes on a recurring floral note, showing impressive persistence and suave, even tannins." -JR, Sep/2018
(92-94) Points - Wine Advocate
"The 2016 Esprit de Tablas contains more Syrah than has been the norm in recent years, a reflection of its unusually fine quality in this vintage. A blend of 46% Mourvedre, 31% Syrah, 18% Grenache and 5% Counoise, the wine reveals youthful notes of strawberries, licorice and aromatic bark. On the palate, it's textural, medium to full-bodied and savory, with fine-grained tannins, good balance and nice depth and dimension. It will be bottled in July and seems to be a very promising rendition of Esprit de Tablas." -WK, 5/31/18
92 Points - Wine Enthusiast
"Exotic cherry aromas mix with mace and other rum-barrel spices on the nose of this blend of 46% Mourvedre, 31% Syrah, 18% Grenache and 5% Counoise. There's a burst of red cherry and tart strawberry on the palate, which then settles into a smooth suave texture." -MK, 2/1/19
92 Points - Wine Spectator
"Precise and well-structured, yet savory and expressive, with loamy mineral, dried cherry, smoky anise and black pepper flavors that build complexity toward broad-shouldered tannins. Mourvedre, Grenache, Syrah and Counoise. Drink now through 2026. 2,850 cases made." -TF, 4/30/18