Not sure if Draper is still making these wines, but Ridge has been so consistent & solid over the years... and this affordable kitchen sink blend is delicious: dark & rich, big extraction here w/mouth coating tannins and gobs of brambly red & black berry fruit. Def some oak in this bad boy, hi ABV as well. Bit unruly right now - probably needs a nap for a few years. — 4 months ago
Killer nose out of the gates. Blackberry and mega tar. Smell the ink. But also mega mineral. Concentrated and deep with mega tarriness and inky blackberry fruit. Big slatey tannins but not unruly as there is a sense of refinement here. Juicy and deep. This is very very fine. Has 20+ years. — 2 years ago
David at Vinous nailed the tasting notes (tasted 2016):
"A faintly fungal note accents apple jelly, glazed pineapple, candied grapefruit rind and caramel on the nose, leading to a colorfully complex but rather opaque as well as decidedly confectionery palate impression. The finish is forcefully sustained but lacks the primary juiciness and salinity that might have leavened the wine’s sheer thickness and overcome slightly rough and unruly manifestations of botrytis."
TDN is certainly more pronounced now, but the part on botrytis was bang on. The wine could do better with a little less/cleaner bot, but I guess it is a true representation of the vintage - 2014 was marred with bot issues. In the words of Helmut, "this one was picked out from the Spätlese material on a table by my top harvest brigade. We’ve had lovelier Auslesen, but when it’s constantly humid, you get negative infection and can’t expect more than this.” On the bright side, the minerality of the site still shines through and when paired with some baked pears drizzled in honey... Divine 🤤 — 3 years ago
Wonderful unruly and spicy, but lightly flattering and later somewhat creamy. Makes you dream sitting in Tuscan vineyards in evening sun. 700 Celsius grilled Flank steak of “werdenfelser weiderind” - violett asparagus in rosemary butter - “Haferwurz”, hazelnut oil - bob dylan on vinyl, make wine not war- a perfect wine now — a year ago
Sammie had this 2 years ago