Winery/Vineyard: Doffo Winery
Product/Varietal: 60% Cabernet Sauvignon + 40% Syrah
AVA on Bottle: Temecula Valley
Winemaker: Damian Doffo
How They Describe It
The 2018 vintage of our original field blend takes on more of a bordeaux style with its low alcohol percentage and subtle oak profile. Fragrances of plum, ripe strawberries and rose petals give way to caramel, cacao and vanilla, and its velvety mouthfeel and balanced acidity linger on the palate.
How I Describe It
The Doffo 2018 Mistura has a primarily ruby hue, with medium intensity. The Syrah imparts a hint of magenta, but the Cabernet base dominates the color palette. Both Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are ageworthy varietals, so the colors will undoubtedly evolve over the years.
While cassis is the most forward aromas, tart raspberry and blueberry seem to push through on the Doffo 2018 Mistura. Vanilla, eucalyptus, cedar, and dried rose petals join the bouquet. In addition, ever so slight hints of crisp bell pepper and licorice root make an appearance.
Raspberry and blueberry play the dominant flavor roles, while cassis brings up the secondary. Cloves and fresh cut wood blend with more subtle black pepper, bell pepper, licorice root, and sweet cream. A whisper of tobacco emerges on the finish.
Doffo’s 2018 Mistura is dry, and at 13.5% ABV the alcohol content is a surprisingly tempered medium. To that point, while Cabernet Sauvignon commonly has under 14% alcohol, Temecula Syrahs can often creep toward 15%. The rest of the wine is decidedly medium-plus: acid and tannins balance each other well, lending to a medium-plus body, medium-plus flavor intensity, and a medium-plus finish. Needless to say, it’s impressive how Doffo managed to keep the Syrah from blowing the alcohol content out of proportion while maintaining such rich flavors.
Why is This Wine Special?
For being so notably young, the Doffo 2018 Mistura is a remarkably well-balanced and interestingly layered wine. Despite its age, it’s very drinkable now. However, it assuredly will continue to develop if properly aged. Frankly, I am very curious how this wine will mature over the next 10 years.
As a general rule, bad grapes will make bad wine; good grapes might make good wine. Many times, wine reviews focus on the winemaking process once the grapes are picked. I want to take a moment to applaud Doffo Winery for how they grow their grapes. I don’t know how they do it, but there are qualities in all the wines we’ve reviewed which certainly come from how Doffo’s grapes developed in their vineyards — from the measured alcohol content in their Syrahs, to the tempered capsicum in their Cabernet Sauvignon, to the fruity brightness of their Viognier and Malbec.
Frankly, I haven’t had a mediocre wine from Doffo Winery yet.
When & How I Would Drink It
First and foremost, get a hold of at least two bottles: one to drink now, and at least one to hold on to.
The Doffo 2018 Mistura is ideal now for meals where a berry-forward flavor profile complements the dishes. Grilled ribeye or filet comes to mind. However, the medium-plus body also makes it an acceptable partner to rack of lamb. Serve with grilled or roasted vegetables and/or richly flavored starches, like garlic mashed potatoes or rice pilaf.
How to Get It
Bottle Price: $62.00
Cases Produced: ~800 cases
Have you tried the Doffo 2018 Mistura? How did the tasting notes compare with your experience? Leave a comment below.