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Community Tasting Notes (4) Avg Score: 89.3 points

  • At Wijn Antiq AMS (blind tasting, theme Southern Rhone). Medium red, bricks orange. Powerful in the mouth with ripe fruits (cherry and prunes) and sweet tones. Well layered. Very interesting wine. Drink now.

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  • I'm more impressed with this bottle than a previous one last Dec. (see TN). I think I've drunk about 18 or so since release, but this was my last one. I've always thought this was one of the more impressive '96 Southern Rhones I tried. I regret drinking too many bottles in their youth, but, good as it was, I would not have predicted this would age as well as it has. The nose screams aged Southern Rhone. Nothing flashy about this one - honest wine here. Dark, pruney fruit and leather, with some herbs and licorice mingling in. It has some heat on the palate, but it's not prickly-hot and volatile, as I recall many '96s being (admittedly, I have not tried any in a while). This is ready to roll now (and has been for a while), but, well-stored, I could see this hanging around a few more years without sliding too far downhill.... A very solid performance for the vintage, if not quite at the level of top vintages of Santa Duc. That said, the '96 offers us a look at a mature S.D. Prestige bottling - something the '95, '98,'99,'00,'01 and even the '90 are years away from...

    Note: Tasted side by side from Riedel Sommelier Hermitage glass, Riedel Vinum Syrah and Spiegelau Authentis Red glass, I was amazed by how much more focused the aroma was in the Hermitage glass - less heat as well. Plus, you can't beat the paper thin lip and overall feather-light feel / balance of the Sommelier series glasses.

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  • From my cellar this wine was showing better a year or two ago, though this bottle was certainly enjoyable. The nose was not as expressive as it was in the last few bottles. On the palate - licorice, dark fruit, spice with a light herbal note. There's a subtle metallic component on the finish. It has become more obviously acidic since it has lost a good bit of its fruit. Not one to keep much longer...

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  • Limpid and transparent with fairly strong hints of evolution the nose features grilled bread, prunes and strawberry jam. In the mouth it is ample with still powerful, dry tannins

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