This is a former Wine Spectator Wine of the Year.  It was nice to revisit this wine.  It seems to be at peak and drinking as good as it will get.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has cherries, spice, chocolate and dried cherries.  On the palate, this is full bodied with a lush texture.  Just a wisp of tannins.  Layers of chocolate covered cherries and slight earth.  Long finish.  Food friendly.  Certainly one of the best California Merlot's I have had.  Even Miles from Sideways would like it.  It still has five to ten years, at least, left if well stored.  

Grade: 
A+
Score: 
97
Vintage: 
2001

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