Deep, intense, and complex from start to finish. The prevailing aromas of berries, earth, tobacco, currant and plum, carry through to the flavors and a long, lingering finish. Full bodied, it has the structure for extended bottle aging, if desired.
Connoisseurs' Guide to California WinesOh what a difference a vintage makes. Whereas the '97 edition of Raymond's hallmark wine was an exemplary success, this one has turned out to be lesser stuff. Its intensity is lowered and its black cherry fruit comes with hints of a shoe polish note instead of the focused, concentrated vitality of its predecessor. It is on the gritty, coarse side in feel, not because it is excessively tannic but because its tannins do not find fruit extract for buffering. A few years in bottle will be useful.
Wine SpectatorRating: 89/100 - As reviewed by Wine Spectator on 06/30/02.