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RayE 88

2006 Pine Ridge - Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
Noticeable berry fruit with a dusty quality, with black fruit, cedar, and coffee on the nose. Decant for 4-6 hours, because even in 2012, the wine is tightly wound. It opens up eventually with red and black fruit, with a hint of black tea, a noticeable oak and spice character on the palate, with grippy tannins making for a long, if still somewhat astringent finish.

(Tasted May 22, 2012)

RayE 88

2005 Blackstone Reserve Pinot Noir Clone 828
Deep, dark, boysenberry, red plum, cherry liqueur, cola and black tea on the nose. Spicy, brightly acidic with enough tannin to give it structure. Fruity spice midpalate, with more tea-like notes, even a hint of bubblegum(?). Full bodied with some weight to it; a lot of sediment so decant or pour carefully. Very long finish well supported by strong but not overbearing tannin.

(Tasted May 24, 2012)

RayE 85

2009 Blackstone - Malvasia Bianca
The 2009s hit their stride in about 2010-2011. By 2012, it's a wonderful yet subtly different experience. The bold grapefruit tang has mellowed greatly, still present but now blending well with the other citrus and honey-like notes. The sweetness comes out a little more, now that the brash citrus bite is subdued. It tastes almost like a moscato now, yet the grassy notes of a moscato have been replaced by the tropical fruit highlights that are so characteristic of the malvasia experience. It's still a wonderful drink, but I don't think I'll let the rest of my stock hang around too long... this summer will be warm and the Blackstone Malvasia Bianca will yet again be a star at my patio parties!

(Tasted May 13, 2012)

RayE 90

2010 Seghesio Family - Zinfandel Sonoma County
Still a little early to drink this, but with about an hour in the air, it was really showing its power and depth. Dark fruit and pepper on the nose that punches harder on entry, followed with smoky spice, licorice and cedar midpalate. Strong tannins that should even out with some more time in the bottle. I'll be checking back in with it after another year in the cellar; WS says wait till 2014 but I don't have that kind of patience. ;-)

(Tasted May 10, 2012)

RayE 87

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