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Best of the Best 2012: Domestic Red Wines: Justin 2009 Focus Paso Robles

Brett Anderson

One of the first wines of note to emerge from the now-bustling Paso Robles region on California’s Central Coast was a wine called Isosceles, a Pauillac-style blend of Cabernet Sau­vignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc from Justin Vineyards, founded by Justin Baldwin in 1981. Since that time, the region and this particular winery have gained renown for producing Bordeaux-style wines. One of the most spectacular releases to come from the area in recent years is the Justin 2009 Focus Paso Robles (www.justinwine.com, $95), a blend of Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon that surpasses in quality even the evocative 2008 vintage. Brimming with blueberry, sage, cinnamon, and roasted-coffee flavors, this stunning mélange is available only to an allocation list.

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