The 1981 stood out as slightly superior. Winemaker John Duval always felt this was a tannic style of Grange, but the wine has shed its tannins, and this is one of the few vintages where the percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon was above 10%. Sweet notes of creme de cassis, cedarwood, charcoal, and barbecue spices are followed by a full-bodied, opulent wine displaying heady amounts of alcohol, glycerin, and density in its full-bodied, skyscraper-like texture. I was drinking this wine with great pleasure in the mid-nineties, yet here it is nearly 15 years later, and the wine does not appear to have budged much from its evolutionary state. This is a testament to how remarkably well these wines hold up, and age at such a glacial pace. (RP)
Black/ruby and one of the deepest colours in this range (The Samplers 10th birthday icon collection.) Mild, sweet, lightly medicinal but so pure and refreshing. Neat and fresh. Sweet with a lot going on -- almost as though all the contents of the medicine cabinet had been cooked up together. Dry, savoury, lightly tarry finish after all that rich fruit. Very well balanced and lovely now but with lots still to give. 19/20 points. Drink to 2034. (JR)
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