Joseph Phelps Eisele Vineyard Cabernet Mini-Vertical (Benoit, NYC): A lovely start to the evening. The nose offers a potent shot of rosemary, blackcurrants, and a hint of fig. Remarkably lightweight for its concentration. Not as much length as I'd hope for--this doesn't really get past the midpalate--and after 3 hours of air it got angry and hid behind a a barbed-wire fence of tannin. Fellow tasters seemed confident this would not achieve the heights of the '85 or '78; I have no idea.
Corked. Though there's some concentrated fruit, chocolate and mint to experience beneath the sharp moldy note (probably TCA), the experience is not worth the effort. Aroma and palate feel is wretched. Resampled over three hours, with no improvement found. Makes me sad and angry, as we had looked forward to enjoying this bottle for almost 20 years. Bottle #1 of one.
Expressive bouquet showing mulberry and juicy bubblegum upon opening followed by dead tree bark, tobacco, green bell pepper and rootbeer hard candy. This structure is very correct but the fruit seems a little tired. The finish is long and deep. Uninspiring. I just can't get over the cooked fruit and tarriness. Maybe this was cooked, I don't know.
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