($70) Good deep red-ruby. Dark berries, black cherry and licorice on the nose, with a less exaggerated oak element despite the fact that this was aged in 95% new American barrels. Not particularly sweet, but the mid-palate offers better grip and lift than the 2004, with laid-back flavors of currant, plum and tobacco leaf. Finishes with substantial, slightly dry tannins and good persistence. Incidentally, the production of this wine was increased in the early part of this decade and is now in the 75,000 case range.Author: Stephen Tanzer
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