Eyes: Nice raspberry lucidity
Nose: Acetate which blows off after time, some pinot noir stink, cedar and strong tobacco after some air time.
Palate: Chunky. Some steely minerals, strawberries and tart berries. Fantastically tannic immediately after opening - let this one breathe!
Finish: creme brulee and moderately herbal finish.
With air this wine softenes substantially but never really balances out. While the overwhelming tannins are the story early on, after time an unbalanced bitterness emerges at the back of the palate. The nose is not terribly complex though not unpleasant. The finish has some green herbiness to it but never finds its stride.
This wine was a story of potential that never makes it. The cedar and tobacco on the nose were exciting to discover (after time) but they did not transfer character to the palate or finish. The palate had some good character and flavors but never got the tannic/acid balance right. This produced a chunky wine that tried but did not obtain. Like biting into a microwave burrito that was hot in one area, icicle in another and all the cheese was stuck at one end. You know that you've had decent burritos but this isn't one of them.
I picked up this bottle in England on the same business trip that I bought the Chateau Filhot Sauternes 1996 (see review below) and paid about 17 pounds (about $30 US) for it. I feel it was overpriced in this range.
If you see this one, pass it by for another.
Raise a Glass!