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95(+?) Points | Stephen Tanzer's IWC - January/February 2004
($425; a blend of 60% mourvedre, 20% grenache, 10% syrah and 10% counoise) Saturated ruby-red. Highly complex, very primary, inky nose hints at blackberry, black cherry, licorice, spicecake and tree bark; dominated by the mourvedre. Then dense, thick and sappy in the mouth, with brooding black fruit and mineral flavors and superb precision. Hints of meat and leather lurk, but, like the regular release, this is extremely backward and dominated by dark fruits. Offers superb thickness without any excess weight, and a wonderfully seamless, elegant texture. Finishes extremely long, with very fine tannins. A unique critter: a Chateauneuf du Pape with just 20% grenache. Likely to develop in bottle for two decades or more. (Vineyard Brands, Birmingham, AL)