Saxum 2016 The Hexe Red Blend
94-96 Jeb Dunnuck
The 2016 Hexe is a new cuvée from Saxum, built around Smith's darker, burlier Grenache lots (predominantly from older, head-trained vines on the south-facing slope of the James Berry vineyard). The wine will receive extended élevage—so in a sense, it represents the obverse of the more ethereal, fragrant Rocket Block and the Grenache analogue of the Syrah-based Broken Stones. The nose offers up aromas of sweet spices, ripe cherries, blackberries, licorice and asphalt, followed by a full-bodied, richly tannic wine with a chewy, firm finish. This is going to need its prolonged stay in barrel to resolve those tannins, but it's very promising indeed. It's a blend of 56% Grenache, 13% Petite Sirah, 10% Syrah, 9% Mataro, 7% Graciano and 5% Tempranillo.