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There is time for one more winery visit before we leave Texas Hill Country, and we’ve been underwhelmed so far. I took the advice of some locals and stopped in at Inwood Estates. Finally, we taste a full lineup of quality wines. This blend is an example of what carefully tended, Bordeaux varietals can do in this forbiddingly hot climate with a short growing season. It’s a little more slender than California Cabernet but its unique characteristics make it worthy of some attention.

Dark plum and fig wrapped in subtle cedarwood with rosemary highlights produce a lovely aroma profile. The oak is already well-integrated, seamlessly melding with the fruit.

In the mouth, the wine is succulent and complex with balsamic and mineral notes surging at midpalate and continuing to show on the finish. A medium plus body with a texture more sinewy than lush, the tannins are fine grained and silky with little grip. There is tautness in the mouthfeel with backbone coming from the acidity. What sets this wine apart are the surprising tart flavors as the refreshing, medium-length finish draws to a close. This lifted quality on the finish is unusual in a Cab dominated blend—it’s pushing the limits of acid worship but it works.

A serious yet graceful wine with a vivacious aspect, it will excel as a food wine especially with rosemary-inflected lamb chops.

81% Cabernet Sauvignon blended with Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot, and Cabernet France, with 2% Tempranillo. Purchase directly from the winery.

The dark, complex  yet energetic musings of Erik Truffaz’s Mechanic Cosmetic match the aura of this wine.

Score: 92

Price: $50

Alc: 14.4%

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