French California

Well, I said I was gonna drink all my 2012’s before they turned eleven and while I am not deviating from that goal, here’s one you shouldn’t rush out and pop. Not necessarily, anyway. It’s good. It’s really good–possibly at peak–but NOT showing ridiculous amounts of the things which have disappointed lately. The grainy, dirty nose is the best indication, a minty, dusty, Napa Valley grime and grit positively intimidating to any other flabby versions of the vintage. Heavy maroon *barely* bricking, just a dense, beautiful aged color. Fruit thick and rich in the bouquet, running intense briar and elegant vegetal throughout. Leathery and dripping with tertiary still peaked with fresh spice and steely focus.

Tasting it is where you feel maybe they need to be dranken. Rich and supple, a STUNNING drop, but with everything smoothed down solidly around a lightly-structural core. Tannins not powerful or harsh, but present and aware: more of a mere curl of texture bordering bitter berry lanes. Black cherry doing that fading thing where initial chubbiness fails to go the distance, but nowhere are signs of emergency. Another comfortable 5 years on this one. A wine I am coddling in my glass and would proudly serve any of you and watch your eyes sparkle.

2012 CLOS DU VAL Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 14.1

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