Straight Out Of the Bottle: It is clear that the 2008 Reverie Cabernet Sauvignon needs a little time to open up. This wine is complex with notes of chocolate, raspberry, oak, and anise. While, the tannins were a bit robust straight out of the bottle, our hopes are that they will hopefully mellow with a little time in the decanter. This vintage may also benefit from a little more time in the cellar but it is drinking well right now.
Decanting (1-1.5 hours): With time this wine opened up into a fantastic cab! True to the varietal, this Cabernet Sauvignon is on the bigger side with nice notes of dark red fruit, oak, and a hint of cracked black pepper. A nice surprise coming out of this vintage is a strong jammy note of fresh raspberries mixed with melted milk chocolate. The oak characteristic mellowed out quite a bit and is now melding perfectly with the other notes. Overall, we are extremely pleased with this wine! While it is on the pricier side, if you get a chance to enjoy the 2008, it is definitely worth it!
Handicap ($77): 95
For those of you not familiar with Orin Swift and his wines, the Papillon is one of my personal favorites. French for butterfly, this wine is as beautiful and intriguing as the name suggests.
It is a BIG, red blend and thusly will need some time to open up in a decanter – about one hour is ideal. Without decanting this wine is nice but falls short of its potential.
After decanting this wine is well balanced and full bodied. The tannins are velvety across the palate. On the front this wine gives strong notes of grape, followed by vanilla and a hint of cream. The back is dry with oak, nutmeg, and raisin. The finish is very strong and lingers on the palate long after each sip.
Orin Swift’s 2008 Papillion lives up to its reputation and is certainly on par with previous vintages. This is a great wine to break out on a special occasion or when you need something that will impress an educated wino.
Handicap ($50): 92
Good value for the price.
Immediately out of the bottle, we decided that this wine needed a little time to oxidize and mellow out. The tannins were pretty rough, making this wine abrasive and not very approachable.
With some time in the decanter (~30 min), it became a simple, fruit forward Cabernet Sauvignon. There wasn’t a lot of interesting features with this wine, but the tannic structure after mellowing out in the decanter, became smooth and enjoyable.
While it was a simple wine with not a lot of depth or character, it is a great wine to enjoy when you don’t want to spend a lot of money on a bottle.
Handicap ($11): 90
For cheap wine, this is a definite repeat!
2008 Five H Syrah from Seven Hills Vineyard
Walla Walla Valley
Very interesting wine straight out if the bottle. Immediately on the palate you get a burst of bright red fruit, specifically raspberry – very jammy. This leads into subtle flavors of milk chocolate and a hint of cream. The mild, mature tannins add a bit of maturity and help balance out the mild acidity. Surprisingly, this wine has a dry, sharp finish with some mild notes of leather and maybe a hint of oak.
While this is not your traditional black-pepper Syrah, it is a fantastic drinkable and approachable wine!
Handicap ($15): 91
For the value, this wine is fantastic!