Opened one hour in advance. Cedar/menthol aroma. Rich flavors of black fruit, spice, some heat. Vanilla, cedar, spice finish. Balanced, well integrated, interesting flavors, some complexity, good staying power.
I really liked this, but would like it better with less heat, which may come with more time. But it's a minor issue, and this is great right now.
With pan fried strip steak, squash and fresh-baked fougasse. Bottle opened 40 minutes prior to consumption - decanted 15 minutes prior. Clear garnet, no longer opaque but showing nicely. Nose was blackberry/dark cherry, and certainly enticing. Smooth and lively on the palate, tasting of fennel, chocolate, nice fruit, with some acid to make it interesting. Soft tannins in the back. Good length. Enough backbone to pair nicely with the steak.
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