Bottles of the '99 Cigare Volant, now in it's 14th year, may have experienced many differing standards of care. Ours was fabulous, and completely delivers on the Rhone Ranger's proposal. Aromatically it presents the mature complexity that could be mistaken for an elegant Burgundy, or an older northern Rhone.... tho lacking anything similar to cured meats or bacon. And interesting melange of thyme, roasted meat, anise, and menthol... maybe from the eucalyptus thereabouts.... it completely emulates the profile of an older Chateauneuf (modulo producer). Relatively abundant acid is modulated with vibrant black cherry/berry fruit that might seem too slight without a proper lean (sirloin) steak, or tartare... or venison. Respectable tannic structure, not overpowering, served well with substantial grilled food. Per my rating method... fruit 2.8/4 vibrant but perhaps only 2-4 years left, acid 3/4 may seem overly abundant without proper food, oak- not evident, tannin 3.5/4 properly in relation to fruit, density/persistence 2.8/4 on the more elegant side.... overall 2.7/4 or about a "90-91" in my book. (note... these are not arithmetic scores for those out there reaching for calculators....)
My first thought was that this was some kind of mataro bomb: rich, meaty, smoky, with coffee and roasted notes... and also too old at this point to really be drinkable, alas. The fruit seems to still be there, but all of that turn of the century microoxygenation and wacky tannin management appear to have left it without a supporting framework. Bummer, dude.
And again, I was surprised by the fact, that this wine is still enjoyable after all those years. I have to admit, that the wine was better some years ago when I tasted him the last time, but nevertheless the smell of black fruits, coffee notes and dark chocolate shows a smile on my face!
I have to say I was surprised. This was an experimental second bottle - meant to be the cheap one following the longer ranging cab but well done Bonny Doon... It's still alive and kicking as one of the other reviews put it. Don't hold but drink it and enjoy its fiery but much mellowed quaffability!
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(Bonny Doon Le Cigare Volant (California)) This has good fruit on the nose, with already some suggestion of grilled meat aromas. A full bodied palate, with plenty of character. A layer of red fruits sit with spicy meats. There are some obvious chalky, mineral tannins, and the palate is cut through by a fair amount of acidity. With more fruit on board I would say this has good potential for ageing, but as it is I'm not sure.
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