(From 2009 Vintage) Richly-hued, opaque and dark garnet in color. Aromas of black cherry, tobacco leaf and cedar leap from the glass. Massive on the palate, this wine is built to last with solid tannin structure and great linear progression. Initial flavors of black cherry, ripe blueberry, bramble blackberry and dark plum progress to reveal spices including cardamom and a hint of cinnamon, culminating with a long lingering finish dominated by red berry fruit and rose petal. Striking the ideal balance of strength and finesse.
(From 2001 Vintage) It's flavors of boysenberry, plum and dark chocolate give it a round mid-palate which compliments the wine's intense bouquet of dark fruit followed by a long finish. The wine's structure is gleaned from velvety tannins. It is a tightly focused wine that promises to be a delight in its youth and will have particular beauty as it ages.
Connoisseurs' Guide to California WinesInviting elements of black cherries and raspberries are overlain in the nose by a rich veneer of cocoa, caramel and sweet toast, and, while the wine similarly does not stint on creamy oak in its flavors, optimally ripened fruit is what drives this well-focused working from beginning to end. Full in weight, fleshy and nicely extracted, it has the tannic underpinnings of a wine meant for age. Leave it alone for at least three or four years and expect it to deepen for a decade or more.
Wine AdvocateRating: (90-93) - As reviewed in Wine Advocate # 157 on Feb-05