For those who think this a Zinfandel dominated blend (as many around the table did), think again. In 2005 the make up was 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot and 2% Cabernet Franc. A whole host of aromas and flavours flooded out, including, but not limited to: mocha, vanilla, and black cherry - the wine was well-balanced with great forceful tannins. I had read the wine still had plenty of time but I wanted to have it in its prime rather than cresting the hill. Seemed to be a hit with the prime rib we had for dinner, and then on its own afterward.
We decanted this and drank relatively unceremoniously. It came across as a good quality, balanced, not overdone in any way California BDX blend. Not mind blowing or particularly special but a really nice wine. Not a QPR wine but not at all disappointing at the price. Fwiw it drank to my palate better than the particular bottle of Bionic Frog alongside it.
Bright fruit on the mouth with a long and complex finish. Leather, balanced tannins. Enjoyed with a great piece of beef life couldn't be better. The wine looks ruby colored. There is no sediment in the bottle.
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(Ridge Monte Bello) Dark ruby color; cassis, toasty oak nose; tight, tannic, cedar, tart cassis palate; needs 8-10 years, very shut down from when I first tried it a few years back; medium-plus finish 91+ points (70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc)
(Ridge Monte Bello) Nice big berry, plum cassis nose; very tasty berry, boysenberry, chocolate palate with good cedar edges and sage, good acidity; medium-plus finish (70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot, 2% Cabernet Franc; 94% new American oak, 6% new French oak)
(Ridge Vineyards Monte Bello Cabernet Sauvignon) A barrel sample. A massive presence of pure, concentrated, roasted cherry fruit, with lots of fruit complexity. The same character is found on the palate, which is brimming with youthful fruit. There is a good tannic structure. This is only a baby, but it has great potential.
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