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A big, age-worthy wine with high acidity, tannins, and alcohol. Flavor profile is fruit forward with blackberries and cherries. All in all this wine's characteristics remind me of a very good to top of the line Aussie red. 92 points. Hold until at least until 2005 to let the tannins and alcohol cool off a bit more.
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no decanting...

lovely plum coloring, nose of warm blueberry muffin, new oak & lurking cedar... smooth & fruity initially, with black & bing cherry coming on the front, followed by slight, slight mocha, some tobacco, ripe currant & ending with some lingering vanilla... still a lil, i mean a lil, tannic with some heat on the finish, though definitely not disjointed or overbearing... enjoyable now but will be better in a year... mmm 90-91 ish
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i had this with a simple dinner of BBQ'd NY steak & Ventura lobster tails, sauteed mushrooms, zucchini & squash...

decanted 1 hour

definitely more approachable then last time... inky black coloring, some sediment showing on the bottle... at first vibrant nose of dark fruits, revealing some cedar now & a little melted chocolate (1 1/2 hours later)... thick, full, milky dark fruits on the palate, with full bitter-sweet chocolate brownie influence, ripe black currants & tobacco through to the finish... glad to say the new oak has completely subsided, and the finish, while still a lil' tannic, is long & lingering with chocolate notes... solid 92

still think this will be better 6 mo.'s from now, but with a little time, this is quite enjoyable now

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