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Rusty Guinn
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89

2007 Kilikanoon - Shiraz Killerman's Run
Mild nose, with apparent fruit and glycerin. Drinks quite well, with a great front and mid-palate of currants, blackberries and spice. Decent finish, but nothing to write home about. Firm tannins throughout, and didn't seem to soften much in the glass. Still, a terrific value!


(Tasted Jul 3, 2010)
89

2009 Von Strasser - Gruner Veltliner
One of the first Gruener plantings in Napa. What a fine summer wine! A base of pleasant minerality is overlain by granny smith apples, kiwi and a healthy bit of acidity. Not as dry as I like my Austrian Gruener, but a really pleasant find in Napa!


(Tasted Jun 3, 2010)
93

2008 Grgich Hills - Chardonnay Estate
Tasted at the winery. What a surprise! This Chardonnay is fresh and live - on the nose and early in the mouth, it quacks like a Sauvignon Blanc. Some acidity and citrus here that I wasn't expecting. Not a heavy oak-and-butter chardonnay. A solid base of mineral and gravel with a wash of dried pears, tangerine and walnut shells. Delightful, ready to drink. I'd be bolder than usual in my food pairings with this one.


(Tasted Jun 2, 2010)
89

2007 Caymus - Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley
Prominent fruit on the nose and immediately on the palate. Tannins are harsher than I was expecting - this one might benefit from another year or two in bottle. Starts fruity for a Napa Cab, with a nose of blueberries and cream, but on the palate takes on some more depth, blackberries and (maybe) tobacco? Short finish with a little hint of spice on the back end.


(Tasted Jun 15, 2010)
94

2003 Yalumba - Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz The Signature
This is a solid year for The Signature, which is a consistent Shiraz/Cab blend from Yalumba. This wine evolves noticeably in the glass, and takes on dramatically different character with an hour in glass or decanter, so do yourself a favor and give it a little time. Straight out of bottle it's probably closer to a 90. Solid nose of dried cherries - the cherries, chalk and coffee dominate in mouth. Surprisingly long finish (25+ seconds?), with the dark flavors and earth maintained throughout.


(Tasted Aug 12, 2009)

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