The word "black" applies to a number of things here: cherry, coffee, currant. Cola is another part of the fabulous mix. Tons of polish, and creamy and rich. A palate-pleaser supreme; there’s a lot of class and breed here. Fine and fancy, with excellent weight. What more could you ask for?
A dense, rich wine with a strong herb-and-spice edge. It fans out, however, to reveal more fruit; blackberries, cassis and plums come to mind. Anise and chocolate flavors are also in evidence. Cedary edged tannins offer a fine framework in this complex wine, which should age beautifully.
Gorgeous, beautiful wine, so strongly delicious on its own that it will be a challenge to pair it with food. A myriad of flavors cascades over the palate: cassis, blackcurrants, black cherries, white chocolate, spiced plums and dried herbs. So rich and decadently ripe, it’s almost a dessert wine. The tannins are completely soft and melted.
Rich, creamy and lush on the palate, with loads of cassis that just roll on and on through the velvety finish. But is no simple fruit bomb—it also delivers plenty of dried herb and tobacco complexity wrapped in toast and vanilla. Drink now—2015.
This expressive Merlot showcases Napa’s ability not only to ripen the variety but to give it pleasurable complexity, no easy task. The cherry, blackberry and cocoa flavors are replicable elsewhere, as is the oak plastering, but this wine has depth and nuance comparable to a fine Cabernet.
If you enjoy cellaring Cabs, this is probably a good candidate. It’s fine to drink now, with forward cassis and cherry flavors that are liberally oaked, and dry. But the tannins are straightforward. They require something big and greasy, like lamb. Drink now through 2012.
Best known for Cabernet, Hartwell planted Sauvignon Blanc close to San Francisco Bay, and this is their inaugural release. It’s a great wine, reminiscent of the best of Marlborough. Enormously rich, it’s absolutely dry and high in acids, with a flood of gooseberry, grapefruit zest and white peach flavors. One-quarter new French oak adds a brilliant touch of vanilla…
Spicy and rich—redolent of bright-edged cherries, blackberries, raspberries, chocolate and licorice. Smooth tannins give good structure. This top-notch California Merlot finishes long and lush. Really lovely.