At only 12.7% alcohol, this is a surprisingly huge wine. Very resolved. Loads of fruit at age 21 years. According to winesearcher, it now retails for $229. I can see why some people with deep pockets would think it's worth that price.
PHMG WAG: Ridge Vineyards (Monte Lyon): Not as good as previous bottles, I suspect this one saw some less than ideal temperatures before it saw its way to me. However this was a great study in mature Cab. Brick rim, very mellow black fruit and tannins, with notes of stone, rose, tea, and Christmas spices. The taste we got at this past NYC WE was also "younger". Know your source/provenance!!
Hands down the finest wine I have ever had from California. Simply breathtaking! This bottle had been lying in my cellar since release. This was the epitome of complexity, balance, fruit and elegance. It had a soaring nose of eucalyptus, menthol, spices, plums and earth that simply had to be experienced to be believed. On the palate it was succulent, savory, and full. The finish must have lasted a minute or more. This is what great cabernet is all about. Simply a brilliant wine.
Dark purple in the center and cloudy violet a centimeter from the glass. This wine smells like Christmas. Cloves, cinnamon, and a pine note that carries a lot of energy. The alcohol is very understated; smelled blind, the bouquet could easily pass for potpourri. It tastes almost exactly how it smells, though the cloves are a bit more pronounced than the cinnamon. The end has a lovely umami that lasts into the finish but that is ultimately eclipsed by the cloves and cinnamon. Medium mouth feel. Still has another 5 years of life, but won't get any better.
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(Ridge Monte Bello) From 375 ml - very dark red violet color; cigar box, smoke, dried berry, dried currant nose; tart currant, cassis, dried red fruit, tart red berry palate with depth, but needs to integrate yet, sense of different moving parts; medium-plus finish 92+ pts. (73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 9% Petit Verdot, 3% Cabernet Franc; decanted for 2 and a half hours)
(Ridge Vineyards Monte Bello) Another dense and backward wine, although with time this one opens a little more than the last, revealing blackcurrant and blackberry aromas. Obviously a youthful wine on the palate, which carries it's powerful Cabernet fruit, tannin and acidity in an awkward fashion. Lush and beautifully textured. The structure is all there, but like the 1993 this wine needs five years at least.
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