Kukkula 2012 “Aatto” Red Blend, Paso Robles

Posted by Keith Wallace

Kukkula 2012 “Aatto” Red Blend, Paso Robles
Kukkula 2012 “Aatto” Red Blend, Paso Robles

Take a look at that label. Wrinkled and shiny. Looking like it was applied by hand. Because it was. Only two types of wine sport such ghetto hand-glued labels: the first is homemade wine made an amateur. The second is made in minuscule amounts by a crazy-talented winemaker who doesn’t care about a payday.

Re-read those last two sentences and ask yourself: could they be the same person? They can. It’s a matter of commitment and location.

Kevin Jussila was just another financial adviser with Merrill Lynch. Sell high! Buy low! ETF! WTF? He lived outside LA, making wine with friends. He planted a half-acre of Syrah grapes in his backyard because –you know– it’s California and not Pennsylvania.

So what does an LA banker do when he gets the wine bug? He moves his family to the western edge of Paso Robles and buys an 80-acre walnut orchard, converting it into a vineyard.

The Aatto is a classic Rhone blend of  Mourvedre, Counoise and Grenache. Can you imagine an Olympic-sized kiddie pool? Think serious but joyful, and that is a wonderful result. Rich with swampy chocolate and decadent oak, this wine will drag you into a grudge match between high-tones and excitable black fruit and a horde of angry herbs bent on world domination. If Arnold Schwarzenegger were a wine, this would be it.

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