Saturday, August 16, 2008

2003 CaliCab Virtual Tasting on

After the immensely successful Syrah Virtual last season, I thought it time to stoke the fires once again with a 2003 CaliCab Virtual Tasting. With over 40 people wanting to be a part of the wine drinking action (not like 'we'll get back to more golf action...') we were off to a good start.
I gotta admit, I was no fan of the vintage when it first came to town. The wines I initially tasted wee weedy, thin and often felt manufactured. Since that initial taste I have had over 150 203s and can honestly say: about 20 were stellar. The usual big boys as well as some surprises.

My first bottle for this tasting is the 2003 Jones Family 'The Sisters' bottling, which in truth is a proprietary red, but who's complaining? Not me.

The 'Virtual' runs from Friday, August 15th, to Sunday August 17th.

2003 Jones Family 'The Sisters'
Super dark and intense plum black color. Very pretty edges reminds me of Black-cherry jelly. The nose has some ultra dark fruits of blackberry, dark black cherry, and currant, as well as a very nice sweet red fruits that really pop. Upon entering the mouth you sense a purity not often found. The fruits want to numb your senses, but in a good way (and this is by no means a fruit bomb). A big structured wine with class. Some lead pencil shavings, leather, and camphor are there. Slightly elevated tannin structure tells me this will go another 5-8 years with no problem. An acid level that sits quietly in the background, trying not to bring attention to itself. Nice. Avery long finish of about a minute, (and even at two you can still taste this wine) wow. I love this stuff. Pure. Elegance & brawn all in one package and that's a tough one to pull off. 95/100

On Saturday I had the good fortune to visit with friends Nano and Claudia in their home for a BBQ. Amongst the dozen plus bottles served, I found a Virtual Tasting themed wine:

2003 Karl Lawrence Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard

Concentrated dark color. This is a pure, clean and wonderful Cabernet that defies the reputation of the vintage. Plush and lush explosive black and red fruits of currant, blackberry and black cherry. Great creme de casis & Kirsch with just the slightest amount of chocolate mousse and a touch of cola. Great unobtrusive tannins that are finely weaved and fully evolved. This is an extremely balanced and deftly structured Cabernet. What a phenomenal effort from KL