From an 11-acre vineyard just north of the Oakville corridor, the 2012 St. Eden shows gorgeous, cedary Christmas fruitcake notes, black cherry and blackcurrant fruit, spice box, earth, and almost first growth Pauillac-like cassis and lead pencil shavings. Deep, full-bodied, and fabulously concentrated, this stunner flirts with perfection. Slightly more evolved than the Quella or Melbury, this wine may be the most drinkable out of the gate of all the Bond offerings in 2012. It should continue to evolve for at least 30+ years. These exceptionally impressive wines from Bill Harlan are all majestic in 2012. There are between 500 and 600 cases of each of these essentially single vineyard wines from five separate micro-climates in Napa Valley, with the exception of the Matriarch, which comes from the barrels and lots culled from the different single vineyards that were considered slightly more forward and less profound than the individual wines. All of them have great singularity and are made with absolutely no compromises. In the great vintages, such as 2012 and no doubt 2013, these wines clearly have 25-35+ years of aging potential. I wouldn’t be surprised in certain years to see them go on for 50 or more years. (RP)
Beautiful fruit definition with blackberries, blueberries, chocolate and burnt orange character. Full body and round, fine powder texture plus dusty, velvety tannins. Long and gorgeous finish.
Musky, nuanced aromatics. A sophisticated palate of fine-grained tannins and balancing acidity. The aromatics are expressive, carrying notes of wild cherry, rosemary, and camphor, which carry into the palate alongside bitter dark chocolate, fresh-pop blackcurrant and accents of tobacco through the finish. The palate is chewy, mouth-watering, with a sense of deftly carried, and well-honed brawn. There is a real focus on nuanced, precise craftsmanship and palate density here - this is as much a wine about style as it is about place - though it does show the lighter structure with less concentration of its vintage. Let this age before opening. (ECB)
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2013 Chateau Ste. Michelle "Cold Creek Vineyard" Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (Elsewhere $30)