2006 Deep garnet bricking hard. Cake-frosting and a bit of a dark-skinned nutty nuance are the complexities surrounding an otherwise ripe, round and dangerously pruning fruit.
In the mouth, bright acid and pine-needle greets before the wisp of fruit is overtaken by still-poignant tannins. Finish a bitter concoction of tobacco and briar. Completely enjoyable, just faded beyond what the winery intended. These things are quite yummy straight outa the box and that is how they should be enjoyed.
2007 Possibly a touch rubier, but nearly identical. A little bottle-funk blows off after an hour or so. What remains is a pleasant but simple stone-fruit and vegetal over a ripe core of, again, dangerously pruny fruit. This one seems WAY flabbier. Bet it’s over 14.
In the mouth, less simplistic, headed toward grainy briar, with fruit keeping up well with the acid and tannin. Smokey warm leather and sweat rule over black cherry fruit bisected with a cleaver of tannin. This is definitely drinking better than the 06, but again: go down to the supermarket and get some fresh vintages and enjoy the rich ripe roundness of them as the winery intended.
2006 RUTHERFORD HILL Merlot Napa Valley 13.8
2007 RUTHERFORD HILL Merlot Napa Valley 14-2