Crazy new oak filling up the bouquet, all anise liqueur, char, and toasted coconut. Not my thing. Shame, the palate is terrific, lots of cool, silky fruit with well-judged acid. Actually pretty dry by Ridge standards with a nice tangy finish. The oak could integrate eventually, making this a lip smacking pleasure to drink. Oakphobes need to avoid for a while though.
Still a deep dark garnet color. A brambly nose and flavors of blackberry, raspberry, blueberry, along with spice, black and white pepper, oak. Full bodied, rich and intense fruit. Tannins are more resolved now, but still slightly apparent. Good acid and structure. Nice finish. Still has a year or so left for appreciation. Paired nicely with hamburger with roasted mushrooms and onions. Score 92-93.
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