A blend of 90% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Malbec (52% Chalk Hill, 45% Alexander Mountain Estate and 3% Bennett Valley fruit), the 2008 may have even greater intensity and richness than the 2007. Still young and unformed, it exhibits phenomenal richness and equilibrium as well as a finish that lasts nearly a minute. Its dense plum/purple color is accompanied by notions of black fruits, forest floor, truffles and spring flowers. It should age for 25-30+ years. (RP)
Bright red-ruby. Inviting nose offers cherry, raspberry and chocolate truffle. Explosive on the front half, with sexy spices lifting and intensifying the redcurrant fruit. Today the wine's tannins give the finish a slightly dry quality but the intensity and subtle persistence of this wine suggest that it simply needs time. Pierre Seillan typically does a pre-fermentation cold soak lasting four or five days, then about eight days of fermentation and no post-fermentation maceration. The malolactic fermentation takes place in barrels of various toast levels and from numerous French forests. (ST)
*Cellar Selection* A pinch of hard tannins gives this bone-dry young wine an astringent toughness. It shows very fine, concentrated black-cherry, cocoa and crème de cassis flavors. Aging in almost 100% new French oak adds notes of toast that the fruit easily tolerates. Nearly all Merlot, it’s a wine of considerable volume, but nowhere near ready to drink. Give it at least six years in a proper cellar, and it could be one of the rare Merlot-based California wines capable of extended aging.
Shows great structure and intensity, with appealing notes of leather and cedar akin to a Bordeaux. Aromas of black cherry and bay leaf lead to firm flavors of plum, dried herb and mineral that finish with firm tannins. Needs time. Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec. Best from 2015 through 2020. (TF)
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