96 Points - Jeb Dunnuck
From a site on the eastern side of the Sta. Rita Hills and aged in 50% new French oak, the 2016 Pinot Noir Atticus John Sebastiano Vineyard offers a very pretty, perfumed style. Red cherries, red plums, rose petals, and blood orange notes give way to a medium-bodied, ethereally textured, seamless 2016 that has some background oak, a layered, ultra-fine personality, and a great finish. It's going to age beautifully. Again, this is easily the most ethereal and seamless in the lineup and shines more for its nuance and elegance than power or richness. Drink it any time over the coming decade.
97+ Points - Jeb Dunnuck
Coming from a terrific site located at the southern end of the Santa Lucia Highlands, the 2016 Chardonnay East of Eden Pisoni Vineyard boasts phenomenal notes of ripe citrus and white peach fruits, white flowers, and freshly crushed rocks. It's clean, incredibly pure, and elegant on the palate, with a level of tension and vibrancy you don't find too often in the vintage. I followed this bottle for two days and it only improved with air. It's a brilliant Chardonnay from Lato that’s going to benefit from a year or two of bottle age and age gracefully for a decade or more. Don’t miss it!
99 Points - Stuart McCloskey
"A wine which offers a special level of purity from the outset and riveting from beginning to end. The nose is flamboyant, intensely perfumed and layered beautifully with plum, liquorice, asphalt, turning to roasted coffee with more aeration. The palate is seamless and washes sweet fruit across every facet with effortless grace. Sweet raspberry, cassis, violets with a touch of background spice. The tannins are fine with perfectly judge acidity, neither of which interrupts the super-long finish. This wine highlights Paul’s natural skill to understand the correlation between vineyard, grape to wine, which is often amiss. A captivating wine of ethereal grace, magical beauty opposed to a dense powerhouse. A US Syrah masterpiece for sure and will only get better over the next decade (sampled using Zalto Bordeaux glass)"
98 Points - Jeb Dunnuck (robertparker.com)
The 2016 Syrah il Padrino Bien Nacido Vineyard is also inky colored and has a distinct marine-like character in its smoked black fruits, crushed rock, iodine, and peppery herb aromas and flavors. It's deep, rich and concentrated, yet stays fresh and balanced. As always, it’s in the same qualitative ballpark as the Larner Vineyard yet has a singular, distinctive character.
95 Points - William Kelley (robertparker.com)
96+ Points - Jeb Dunnuck
Lato always makes the most of this great vineyard, which is located in the cooler, Pacific Ocean-influenced Santa Maria Valley. Black raspberries, red plums, violets, and hints of scorched earth all emerge from the 2016 Pinot Noir Suerte Solomon Hills Vineyard and it’s one of the more masculine, mineral-laced wines in the lineup. Nevertheless, it has beautiful purity and an undeniable elegance. Aged 15 months in 65% new French oak, give bottles a year or so and enjoy over the following decade.