A blend of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Merlot (85% Sonoma fruit and 15% from Napa), this fully mature 1998 should drink well for another 10-15 years. Notes of cedar, tobacco leaf, Christmas fruitcake, black currants and loamy soil emerge from this beautifully constructed, rich, full-bodied effort. It comes across like a serious Pauillac from Bordeaux. (RP)
Deep medium ruby. Bright, ripe aromas of cassis, black cherry, tobacco and minerals. Quite dense but much more backward and less sweet than the Verite merlot. But this is ripe, layered and deep. Finishes with big tannins that avoid dryness. (ST)
A mix of up-front, supple-textured mocha, currant and vanilla, and harder-edged tannins that gang up on the finish, firming, with leather, herb and a chewy, gritty aftertaste. (JL)
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