4th Saturday Brown Bagger (R&D's): Dark color with aromas of black currants, plum, pepper and florals, Adds tobacco, forest floor and roasted bell pepper notes as it sits in the glass. I am reminded of the 2000 Pichon Lalande. There are still some tannins on the palate, though they are softened and not obtrusive. Flavors of back fruit and cedar, saddle leather and tobacco with a long finish. The palate does not have the depth or power of the '00 PLL so I guessed 2000 Reserve de la Comtesse. Another taster guessed 1990 Pauillac. This was WOTN for many of us.
I was surprised to see that this was our Forman. It had been double decanted two and a half hours before the flight was served and changed dramatically in that time. Loads of leather and plummy dark fruit on opening to a complex and beautiful Bordeaux ringer. A terrific example of this wine, with plenty of life left.
Dark garnet in the glass. Wow - gorgeously complex and lifted aromatics. Nose has aged red fruit, pencil lead, cigar ash, saddle leather and spice. Smooth fruit with resolved tannin and juicy acidity. Perfectly mature with plenty of life ahead. Does Napa cab get any better?
Star of the evening with really nice complexity and nice mature fruit. Well integrated and balanced with 2 hour decant. Medium body that was silky yet substantial. Nice minerality on the finish. Some herbs and tobacco notes beneath wonderful fruit.
I drink a lot of Bordeaux and I rarely think Cali Cab (as much as I like it) can really pass for claret, even the old school producers. But damn if this Forman doesn't smell just like a Bordeaux. At first sniff, I was thinking Pichon Lalande, with all of its herbal-leafy aromatics, tobacco, and earthy-loamy notes. With some air, mint and sweetness do emerge, changing the tune a bit to the New World. The palate is resolved and silky, light-to-medium bodied but with good intensity. Notes of a sweeter style of fruit are there to be enjoyed (compared to traditional Bordeaux), but everything is well buffered with acidity and some lingering tannins. Delicious, but this lacks some extra oomph and/or complexity to induce blasphemies. Drink now. 92.
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