Here is my long-awaited lab report. (Sorry, but I dwell on the left coast & tonight was my daughter's Holiday performance at school.)
As soon as was reasonable, I left the singing performance with with my youngest daughter, aka "the star of the show". I left my husband & older daughter at school to deflect the other parents & their children. After all, I had wine to decant!
I arrived home, quickly petted Duncan & Daisy (the 4-legged children), and opened the Titus. I poured 2 small glasses into our Riedel Vinum Bordeaux glasses, & the rest of the bottle into a decanter. Immediately, I began to swirl with earnest. The nose was tight, and mostly I detected sweet cherries & alcohol. My first sips tasted of plum, strawberry & cinnamon. And yes, I detected a bit of dark chocolate on the finish. Overall, the wine was smooth but slightly disjointed. It had a nice mouthfeel with strong tannins. I remembered to ask my husband (who appeared out of nowhere while I was focused on the Titus) his opinion of the wine.
DETOUR: My palate is not nearly as sophisticated as many, but I work on educating it as often as possible. My DH, on the other hand, has an almost "non-existent" (or shall we say unrefined?) palate.
His response is "I like this wine". (Then his usual question is, "What did it cost us?", but I digress...)
After 30 minutes in the decanter, we had our next glass of wine. The nose still was predominantly cherries. However, the wine had begun to evolve. It was much more balanced, & the fruits had toned down a bit. I still tasted cherries, but detected blueberries, still cinnamon & now a bit of coffee. The mouthfeel was much creamier & smoother, and the finish longer. My husband's reaction? "It's smoother." (Yes, he's a man of many words...)
Our last glasses were poured 1 hour after decanting. At this point, the alcohol had dissipated. (I am very sensitive to high levels of alcohol, and prefer a more balanced wine.) Now the wine tastes of cinnamon, chocolate and sour cherries. There is a bit of pepper mid-palate and then a l-o n-g finish, lasting at least a full minute. My husband's reaction? "Reminds me of the 2004 Hartwell Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Grown we bought." And that is high praise indeed!
To give you some sense of my palate, I prefer "old-school" cabs. I don't particularly like fruit-forward, Parkerized wines. I loved this wine! I am very happy I bought it, and am thinking of finding a way to "sneak" more into the house...
This wine has a lovely appeal for cab drinkers. There is a lot of fruit and alcohol to start...but there is so much more! It is well-balanced, and with a bit of age, the wine should be very balanced & smooth. And, when we added the component of food, the wine simply complimented dinner, and became a lovely drinker. I was sorry when the bottle was emptied...
Thanks to all for this amazing opportunity to lab rat this wine. (And if you're on the fence, close your eyes & jump! You may just regret not getting this gift to yourself...)
The wine seems to be very closed-in and seems to have entered a dumb stage. Sort of a Marcel Meursault.
Paul S. Winalski
The best use of bad wine is to drive away poor relations.