Meerlust Rubicon 2001

Beautifully, richly purple, my first thought here was simply “wow, so this is what a really good, ripe, New World fake Bordeaux smells like after it’s aged for a few years.”  There’s a bit of good old fashioned lead pencil, some cedar box, rich, dark damson fruit, and just a hint of dust (strangely, it reminds me of the classroom I once taught in in Germany; it was a cold, concrete room with not much to smell save for the cigarettes students had smoked before class). It also smells just a bit burnt-sugar sweet; it’s something like raspberry crème brûlée, but not overtly so.Surprisingly medium-bodied, the taste begins all red fruits, and then suddenly shifts gears to a sort of shoe-leather, tobacco-leaf earthiness with a high, violet-leaf note as well; then, it fades out slowly, with subtle supporting acidity, ending on a somewhat sweet (not sugary, just sweet) note with gentle spiciness and good length. There aren’t any aged characteristics that I can discern really; this still tastes just great seven years after harvest.This wine’s a keeper – probably the best I’ve had in a month. Great stuff! I imagine it’ll still be in great shape a decade from now – shame I only bought the one bottle!MeerlustPrice: US $25Closure: CorkDate tasted: May 2008

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