Fresh, creamy, big and bold, this big, delicious wine is fleshed out with 17% semillon (note to winery: not semillion!). It has a lifted, spicy freshness which, despite the 14+% alcohol, keeps it on the elegant side, and food friendly.
Very much right-bank Bordeaux, with rich aromas of damp humus and tobacco. Then it turns smooth and plush in the mouth with a degree of ripeness that’s decidedly New World. Finishes with a touch of toasty oak and decent acidity, but not much tannin. Drink over the next few years.
This opens with a very pretty nose composed of rose petals, pear, orange peel and orange liqueur. Soft and pretty, it shows the feminine side of Viognier, avoids the bitterness and excessive alcohol that can detract from its elegance. A lovely springtime apéritif.
There is nothing shy here at 14.7% alcohol, but the impressive bouquet mixes together orange blossoms, citrus rind, powdered sugar and baking spices. It plays out broadly across the palate, with ripe, lightly tropical fruits and a dusting of spice. The only fall-off is right at the end, but the last impression is of a sweet lick of honey.
Seems a little leaner and more compact than DiStefano’s other ’98s. Leafy cassis aromas coupled with toasty cedary oak are classic Cab, as are the acids and firmly tannic backbone that should permit this wine to age well for 7-8 years.
Fresh scents mix melon, tangerine, citrus blossom and honey. The wine is smooth and sappy, with a good backbone of fresh acid. The fruit, though slightly candied, is quite satisfying, and despite the 14.3% alcohol, there is nothing overwrought here. 1,200 cases produced. —P.G.
Restrained on the nose, with subtle herb and spice accents and understated blackberries. Classic, elegant and similarly restrained on the palate, finishing with soft tannins and hints of caramel and minerals. Pretty, but lacks the intensity to score higher.