1994 produced 4,863 cases from a blend of 94% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6% Cabernet Franc. This is one of the great vintages of the 90s, and Spottswoode hit the bull’s-eye with this opaque, ruby/purple-colored wine that still has incredible youthfulness and vibrancy. Fabulous fruit intensity, blackcurrants, black cherries and blackberry, along with charcoal, chocolate and graphite, are all present in this superb, full-bodied, stunningly multidimensional wine that is only now approaching mid-adolescence at age 22. This wine has at least 25-30 more years of life left in it. It is a great one. (RP)
One of the measures of a great vintage is how well its middle-rated wines hold up. We know that the vintage's superstars, the Shafer Hillside and the Phelps Insignia are maturing into the dominant wines of the entire decade, and this wine is growing in status as it ages. It has just entered the period at which real complexity will begin to develop, and it has done so with both streamlined fruit and racy, solid structure still intact. This is a wine that is going to bet better and better. *Two Stars*
Pleasantly balanced, rich and polished, it's in perfect drinking shape now, with well-defined currant and black cherry fruit, smooth, integrated tannins and a long, complex, elegant aftertaste that gives it a sense of grace and finesse. Finishes with a nice touch of cigar box. (JL)
Notably dark. Well balanced and integrated nose already. Layers of flavour - some tealeaf again - with real refreshment and delicacy. Bravo! Transparent and really lifted and elegant. Serious with that brine quality again. By no means obvious but rewarding. Appetising dry (as opposed to sweet) finish. 18/20 points (LM)
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