another Red Carpet tasting, decided to go spur of the moment on Friday before dinner at Bistro Provence in Burbank, usual Red Carpet treatment for younger wines - splash decanted about 2 hours prior to tasting. notes in order of tasting:
2005 Realm "The Tempest" - awesome, open nose of prominent, extracted plum laced w/ tobacco & wet leather that fill the glass... relatively austere & closed in flavor on the palate, attractive texture & weight, nice mouthfeel, ending with spiced brown sugar on the relatively short, acidic finish... too bad, the nose hinted greatness but not much once in the mouth. good, not great
2004 Anomaly - not getting much, but there's subtle scents there - wet earth, cigar box, subtle fruit tones and a hint of pine/mint... plush, juicy & full with luscious cherry & blackberry on the entry, leading to some baking spices & a touch of vanilla that come to the forefront at the finish, lingering fruit & spice on the finish... yum, now thats more like it... exact opposite in profile of the 05' Realm - no nose, but all mouth & body
2004 Trespass - reticent, spicy nose of brown sugar & cinammon that comes across soft & caressing... lots of toasted oak - not sweet vanilla, but mouthwater spice - once in the mouth, overriding subtle red fruits that turn to tobacco & red licorice on the dry, tannic finish... nice texture & balance of structure, just dominant flavors of spice, hard to tell what the profile will be if it tones down
2005 Shelter "The Butcher" - super closed on the nose, not showing much but traces of dill, licorice & cigar box w/ some coaxing... lithe, water & thin on the palate w/ flavors similar in profile to the nose that turns to strong dark chocolate masking any subtle fruit, if at all, dry & tannic but lingers for a good 20-30 sec on the finish
2005 Revana - also tight & restrained on the nose with only hints of tobacco... soft caressing texture on the dry entry that quickly turns acidic on the palate, medium bodied, some little touches of fruit sensations that mostly show new oak, of what flavors are there...
2004 Spottswoode - disappointing... flat nose, barely a whiff of anything coming out of the glass, this may have shut down in the 2-3 hours it had been opened... lovely texture, nice balance of profile & structure w/ just a hint of blackberry & plum, but where's the flavor? ending mouthpuckering dry with overriding, monolithic tannin, and just a bit of acidity that keeps you reaching for a glass of water... a true bruiser, like a younger 05' 2nd growth at this point
my impressions from this tasting were im glad i dont buy many "high end" CA Cab's anymore without trying them first, though they weren't all bad by any means, just unpredictable i would say less one expected characteristic... the 04's were all drinking noticeably better than the 05's at this point, at least to my palate... each 05' shared common traits such as muted flavors, restrained noses & tannic, unrelenting finishes (except the Realm). favorite out of the bunch would have to be the 04' Anomaly, even with the unimpressive nose, probably followed by the 04' Trespass, though i wanted to keep my nose in the Realm...