($95; 70% mourvedre, 25% grenache and 5% syrah) Bright purple. Hugely aromatic, exotic bouquet of dark fruit liqueur, floral oil and incense. Very heady stuff, with sweet cherry and blueberry flavors complicated by candied licorice, violet pastille and mocha. Deepens and develops greater sweetness with air, finishing with outstanding breadth and cling. Wilder and more floral than the |basic| Esprit, with more elegance to boot.
Author: Josh Raynolds
Issue: November/December 2007
Wine Advocate | Rating: 95
Tablas Creek's top red is the 350-case 2005 Panoplie (composed of 70% Mourvedre, 25% Grenache, and 5% Syrah). This is the most compelling Mourvedre-dominated wine made in California, if not the New World. Its dense ruby/purple color is followed by a stunning bouquet of smoky, gamy, Peking duck, fresh mushrooms, burning embers, and loads of black fruits. This dense, full-bodied, tannic 2005 is the California equivalent of the luxury cuvee of Chateau Beaucastel, the Hommage a Jacques Perrin. Give it 1-2 years of bottle age and drink it over the following 15+.
Dark garnet in color, this wine has an attractive nose of strong black raspberry aromas. In the mouth the deep and resonant core flavors center on cherry and plum, with high notes of cassis and faint tannins that linger into a moderate finish. Not quite as complex as the normal bottling to my taste, this limited release is nonetheless a beautiful wine.