Jonata, Santa Ynez Valley, Ballard Canyon, El Desafio 2007

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By US 101


98 points Jeb Dunnuck

One of the gems in the lineup (Matt commented that this fruit was the best he’d ever tasted coming into the winery), as well as one of the benchmark Cabernet Sauvignons to come out of Santa Barbara County, the 2007 El Desafio de Jonata is incredible sexy and exuberant, with awesome notes of black currants, baking spices, dried herbs and graphite. Full-bodied, upfront, and concentrated on the palate, yet at the same time weightless and elegant, it's a sensational Cabernet Sauvignon from winemaker Matt Dees. The 2007 is 95% Cabernet Sauvignon with the balance 2% each of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, and the rest Petit Verdot. (7/2018)

97 points Wine Advocate

Leading off the Cabernet-dominated releases, the 2007 El Desafio de Jonata (95% Cabernet Sauvignon the balance Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, aged in 85% new French oak) also has to be one of the top Cabernets to come out of Santa Barbara. Offering up gorgeous black currant, Asian spice, graphite, chocolate and minerality, it flows onto the palate like a barrel sample with its layers of fruit and big tannin. (JD)  (8/2013)

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