I struggled a bit with the 2007 version of this wine, even as I ended up enjoying its down home company and forgiving its less polished edges.
This wine seems to me an improvement, although I qualify this impression by saying if you are averse to tannins, then skip this completely and take the next train to flabby Merlot; you’ll probably hate this wine. Personally, I’m kind of a tannin addict, and enjoy being roughed up occasionally by a brute of a red like this.
I’m mindful this is a pre-release, though, so one would expect some calming of the tannin profile by the time it’s widely available. In a way, it’s fun to taste now, with those rip-snorting, black tea, fuzzy-tongue, rough wood tannins overwhelming what is very clean, high quality Cabernet fruit expressed in a regional-eucalypt idiom. The fruit takes a while to resolve in the glass, so let it breathe a bit and you will be rewarded by increasingly focused, clean fruit that isn’t outrageously varietal in terms of flavour profile but is definitely Cabernet in terms of its weight, structure and sense of clarity.
One to watch.