Leviathan Red 2018 | Gorgeous Generosity 93JS
Winery | Leviathan Red 2018 boasts an intense mix of fresh boysenberry, black cherry, and plum aromatics. Its earthy elements of our rocky northern California hillsides include bay laurel, sage, cedar, and dry red earth, which speak to its origins. Supple and balanced tannins of this rich wine lead to a long, savory finish.
Notably, Leviathan Red 2018 is a proprietary blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Petite Sirah, and Cabernet Franc. It highlights some of my favorite growing regions in northern California: Coombsville, Carneros, Red Hills, Moon Mountain, Fountaingrove, and the Sierra Foothills.
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93JS | From winemaker Andy Erickson. Blackberry and asphalt aromas with some violets and rose petals. Medium to full body. Some carbon to the dark fruit. Tasty and delicious. Chewy now, but we like it already. Drinkable now, but will improve with age.
Vineyards by Annie Favia
If you can, put Erickson’s many 100-point wines out of mind for a moment. Why? So we can focus on the other half of the Leviathan equation. That would be the accomplished viticulturist Annie Favia. So Annie has worked with Kongsgaard, Corison, Abreu, and Screaming Eagle and also happens to be Erickson’s wife. While Annie’s clout does wonders in securing high-quality fruit from Los Carneros and Coombsville in Napa County, Dry Creek Valley, and Moon Mountain in Sonoma County and Red Hills up in Lake County. Of course, fruit that, because of the way of the wine’s two principals, finds its way into Leviathan.
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So, do you want to taste and own a few bottles of wine crafted by arguably the most acclaimed winemaker in Napa? That’s a rhetorical question. Andy Erickson’s Leviathan Red 2016 has captured the essence of California in yet another outstanding vintage. This bottle sets the standard for under-$50 California reds.
Winemaker Andy Erickson | Screaming Eagle fame
This is one of the very few under-$50 bottles with Erickson’s name on it. Because Erickson’s name is pure gold. And wines with his fingerprints on them usually fetch prices deep into triple digits. In addition to crafting the most sought-after cult wine in California, he has made wine for Staglin, Arietta, Harlan, Spottswoode, and his own labels, Favia and Carbone. But critics and consumers have noticed that Erickson’s magic touch extends to Leviathan. Antonio Galloni of Vinous calls Leviathan Red 2016 “one of the best values in California.”