Mike Grammer comes to town (Galletto Ristorante, Modesto Ca.): Pretty similar to the last bottle a few months ago… SO young looking, black as night…..rich and creamy layered liqueur berry fruit(blackberry,plum,cherry) creme de cassis, warm chocolate, shaved pencil, olive, menthol tobacco leaf……dusty old cedar/cellar polished tannin…yet solid structure. Age has smoothed out this beauty…showing a little nuttiness and leather…but it is really so youthful still……has many many more years to go. Super wine!
Angst (2T): So, this didn't suck. A bit reserved at first, but really came alive with an hour or so of air. Pencil, cherry, woody perfume on the nose. The tannins are very silky and soft; medium-plus acid. This shows what California Cab could be, decidedly new world, but elegant and restrained. Very good.
Excellent on point nose showing jammy black fruits, plums, and cedar. Spectacular palate with a lovely balance of fruit, acidity and just enough structure and an elegant texture that allows the wine dance on your tongue. Very pleasurable with no rough edges, this is in a great place today and should remain so for a long time.
Didn't get to spend anywhere near enough time with this. Classic cool Ridge nose of dark fruits - blackberry, plummy, along with herbal-eucalyptus, minerality, some cocoa. This is deft and elegant, and pretty much puts any modern CA or BDX wine to shame. The palate was still firm, with excellent tannins and structure - good fruit, spice, minerality and herbalness. Way above the 70 Mouton, 88 Petrus and 82 Latour. Nose - 5.5/6, Palate - 5.5/6, Finish - 5+/6, Finish - 1.5/2 = 17.5/20.
Dan's Birthday (Keens Steakhouse): Lovely deep, dark fruit, showing a fair amount of mint and well-integrated American oak. Extremely concentrated and powerful, rich and dense with very lush, fine tannins, this is a less structured, less complex, more Californian version of Monte Bello. The structure is well integrated and the this is drinking beautifully now, and I don't think this will improve much from here. It doesn't quite live up to the best-CA-cab-of-all-time hype surrounding this wine, and I don't think it will make truly old bones like some other MB vintages, but it's still a gorgeous bottle of wine.
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(Ridge Monte Bello) Very dark red violet color; tart currant, pencil lead, iron, tart black fruit nose; very tasty, tart currant, ripe plum, tart black fruit, pencil lead, creosote palate; medium-plus finish 93+ points (85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot)
(Ridge Monte Bello) From 375 ml - slightly bricking dark red violet color with pale meniscus; nice maturing, mushroom, cigar box, dried cassis nose; dried cassis, cassis, with brightness at top and dried fruit below, subtle spices and anise palate; medium-plus finish 93+ pts. (85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot; decanted for 2 and a half hours)
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