It has been awhile since my last 02 Ladera Howell Mountain and this is my last bottle.
This bottle is even better than my last six years ago. The fruits shine brighter. The structure & slight alcohol heat are even bigger than memory.
The one thing I adore about good Howell Mountain producers is the mix of purple fruits and the amazing beautiful blue fruits that follow.
The nose reveals, bright, ripe, slightly candied & hot; blackberries, black cherries, black plum,black raspberries, mixed purple fruits, blueberries, hints of dry cranberries and poached strawberries. Anise to black licorice, mid red cola, dry crushed rocks, steeped fruit teas, limestone minerals, alluvial soils, saddle-wood, soft leather, hints of fresh tobacco leaf, light; dark spice, clove, nutmeg & vanillin. Touch of cooked, green bell pepper with fresh, slightly candied, dark, red, blue flowers with violets.
The 02 vintage is peaking. The body is just full. The structure, tension, length and balance are in perfect harmony. Tannins are 55-60% resolved. She is a beauty on the palate. Somewhat candied & ripe; blackberries, black cherries, black plum, black raspberries, mixed purple fruits, blueberries, hints of dry cranberries and poached strawberries. Mixed purple & blue liqueured notes. Anise to black licorice, mid red cola, dry crushed rocks, mid dark spices, steeped fruit teas, dark expresso roast, limestone minerals, dry crushed rocks, alluvial soils, dark, rich, moist soil, saddle-wood, soft leather, hints of fresh tobacco leaf, light; dark spice, clove, nutmeg & vanillin. Dark chocolate, mocha, milk chocolate, salted caramel, touch of cooked, green bell, mint with fresh, slightly candied, dark, red, blue flowers with violets and lavender. The acidity is perfect...in the range of cool rain shower. The long finish is; ripe, well balanced, delicious and persists nicely for several minutes.
This bottle has another 5-8 years of good drinking ahead of it.
Photos of; Ladera’s entrance and patio, entrance, barrel room and hillside Estate vineyard. — 6 hours ago
Liked it better out of the bottle than decanted — 6 days ago
This was great. Tannins have subdued into their most elegant form without losing their rustic profile, integrated. Acidity is spot on, this is alive and well right now for its age. Dried shiitake, beef broth, leather, wet tobacco, muddled red and black fruits, blck pepper. Theres some wet earth too. Assuming its at least half Petite Syrah and all from Monte Rosso?? Great bottle. — 13 days ago
This wine is at the top. Nose of red clay, red fruits, black fruit on the nose. Hint of charcoal grilled filet. Herbs. Blood. Iodine. Perfumed power. Entry is full bodied, soft, round. Black and blue fruit with some red clay. Black cherry cola. Truffle. Darker middle with more of a fig influence. Finishes with noteworthy black pepper, softened and still sweeter cedar tannin. Candied plum. Holy moley. 96 without batting an eye. Yet strangely astringent finish even in the final seconds leading one to wonder: is this going to improve? I guess the last of these will be held for a year to answer that question! — 23 days ago
It's time for my #FridayCabernetfix. Here is a tasty Napa Cabernet.
Dark ruby in color with a very short reddish rim.
Fruity nose of blackberries, sweet cherries, black currants, oak, vanilla, licorice, spices, tobacco, barnyard, chocolates, vinaigrette, earth, wet leaves and herbs.
Full bodied with medium plus acidity and long legs.
Dry and fruity on the palate with plums, cherries, sweet strawberries, black currants, earth, wood, vanilla, barnyard, vegetables, dark coffee, herbs, tobacco, chocolates, mocha, spices, peppercorn, leather and pencil lead.
Long tangy finish with soft tannins and tangy cranberries.
This is a great Napa Cabernet. Showing nice complexity now. Nicely balanced with a nice mouthfeel and a tangy finish.
Feels much older than its age, although not showing it on the color.
Good right out of the bottle and better as it opens up and removes some of the stinky nose.
This 5 year old from the great 13 vintage, is drinking very nicely now, and will get better in the next 5 to 15 years. I had the 2012 when it was a 3 year old. What a big difference time makes.
Robert Parker 94 points.
Thank you Wendy for sharing this with me.
I paired it with a charcuterie board of meats and cheeses.
A blend of 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Franc. Aged in 70% new French oak barrels.
14.6% alcohol by volume .
$75. — 14 hours ago
When drinking next to the ‘02 Jericho Canyon, this was drinking better and seemed to be in a really nice window. Decidedly more sweet fruit and integrated tannin. Nutmeg, baked mixed berry pie, cherry swisher sweets, and the whole fruit spectrum on the finish (red, blue and black). Delicious. — 14 days ago
Much better on day two than day 1. Day 2 sweet toasted tannin throughout. Black and blue fruit on the nose and on the front. Black licorice and graphite shows on the middle. Sweet dark plum with black pepper and spice on the finish. This wine is a baby. Only up from here. I have just about zero ability to hold these for 1/10 the time I should and tend to drink these all rather before their time. Monster of a wine. — 11 days ago
Monthly WTF wine group night. Our theme was American oak vs French oak. All wines tasted blind. We started off with two bottles of bubbly and finished with two non-themed reds.
I believe this is the oldest Cimarossa wine I’ve had. I love their wines! Compared to the ‘07 RdC of theirs I had a month or two ago, this is more elegant and finesse. Not as much sweet fruit, but the fruit that is there (juicy blackberries, sweet plum, currant) are balanced and accompanied by some herbal/slightly leathery Bordeaux like notes. Very smooth and integrated on the palate with vanilla, baked black cherries, dark cocoa and graphite. This is drinking at its apex. Thanks @Mark Flesher — 10 days ago
Another Wednesday Wine Committee in the books. Great hosting by @Bill Makens . 1 sparkler, 3 whites, 4 reds, 1 dessert wine all served blind.
My co-red WOTD. Perfumed with sweet oak, candied black cherries and cocoa dusted dates. Youthful. Big structure in place but not overly gripping. Dusty covered blackberries, plum and peppercorn, showing a hint of leather. Gorgeous. I called this late ‘00s/early 2010 Napa Cab. — 16 days ago
Black Hamburgh Muscat yum — 7 days ago