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93 Points

Thursday, January 4, 2018 - This ripe but tart wine is drinking well now, but it needs another year or two in order to unfold and come into its own. Dark purple in color, full in body, nose of boysenberry and gravel road. Tastes of black cherry, raspberry, and rosemary, with a lingering yet sour finish. 14.8% alcohol. Drinks best after two hours of air.

This is an interesting comparison to Mike Smith's wine from the same site (Three Twins), since the Myriad is more opulent and forward. At the same time, I appreciated that this wine - unlike many TRB wines - had a touch more restraint and energy, which allowed the fruit to come to life. I probably lean towards the Myriad, but this is the first TRB wine I've had in a while that has a real signature (beyond well-constructed ripeness) - tight, but promising.

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4 comments have been posted

  • Comment posted by Jonathan T:

    1/4/2018 10:05:00 PM - I read a lot of your notes, and I gotta say that I really enjoyed reading your recent ones, especially your commentary regarding TRB vs Mike Smith vs Realm, etc. I totally agree with your comments. I do think that candied sweetness, overblown ripeness, plushness are gimmicky ways to make a wine tasty, but they never taste expensive to me. For my palate, Shafer HSS consistently delivers the complexity and uniqueness I expect at that price point, but I'm really loving recent vintages of Myriad and Realm as well.

  • Comment posted by msuwright:

    1/4/2018 10:55:00 PM - Thanks for the feedback, Jonathan T - I really appreciate it. I'm not going to go full Jon Bonne on anyone, but I've lately been finding some of TRB's wines to be too much fruit, not enough of everything else. I agree with you, too, that HSS is a singular and impressive wine - ripe, to be sure, but with enough structure and acidity (in a word, complexity) to be compelling.

    The only drawback for me with HSS is the obvious one - the price. I buy a couple bottles each year, but it's obviously not an everyday (or even every month) kind of wine. Similar to you, I've enjoyed Myriad and Realm (and I'd add Carter and Memento Mori to the list, too) in the category of modern / ripe / but not too ripe - that said, I'm curious if you have any others you'd recommend: HSS-like, but at a discount? Thanks again.

  • Comment posted by Jonathan T:

    1/5/2018 10:22:00 AM - I've never had a Momento Mori, so I will certainly check it out. Thanks for the tip. I wouldn't say it is HSS-like in terms of style, but I think Spottswoode similarly delivers quality and consistency year over year. It wasn't long ago that it was a steal at <$100, and then it was still a great value at $125, but recent vintages are unfortunately pushing $180. Still not a bad price relative though. One TRB wine that I think is a little more unique than others is Outpost True Vineyard. Probably due to the mountain fruit. The Outpost does need more time than any other TRB wine I've had though. Like the 2007 is starting to come around and it's fantastic.

  • Comment posted by msuwright:

    1/5/2018 5:23:00 PM - I agree about the Outpost, which I think is part of the "upper-tier" of TRB wines that are truly special. Schrader would be another one that would be up there, though it could also just be the quality of the vineyard sources.

    (Also, as I thought about it more, his Rivers-Marie cabernets are in a different wheelhouse altogether - more compact, dense, grainy - though I have to say I haven't loved these, either. I guess I'm just looking for something modern without being excessively fruity.)

    Thanks for the reminder on Spottswoode, which I need to give another try. The few times I've had it, it seemed too savory and compact for my personal taste, but my guess is that (as usual) I drank them too early. Thanks again!

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