Our first bottle showed a slightly dull medium red color and an element of pruney oxidation, not to mention a peppery herbal streak and a distinct mid-palate dryness. But a second bottle showed a much darker, fresher color and an altogether juicier character. Yes, there's an element of peppery herbs that few 1998 California Cabernets totally avoid, but here's there's altogether more red and darker fruit intensity and an element of mid-palate energy that does not read as greenness. The finish is quite firm, with building tannins. My score is obviously for this second sample, which is one of the best bottles of 1998 Cabernet I've tasted recently. (13.6% alcohol; 3.75 pH; 5.8 g/l acidity; aged for 20 months in 55% French and 45% American oak, 68% new) (ST)
Still young and jammy, with dark purple color and great heaps of cherry, blackberry and cassis fruit, overlaid with plush, vanilla-tinged oak. There's an enormous depth of flavor in the mouth, rich and jammy, with fruity, chocolate notes. The tannins are evident now in this very dry wine. It is a cellar candidate; a very good wine, but not a great vintage. *Cellar Selection*
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