I found a bottle of the 2010 lying in the street by my house. Weird, huh? I was excited, but then my heart sank. Before even opening this wine, I hated it. Some of you may be able to guess why before I even say it.... WAX SEAL?!?! Why winery? Why? I hate wax seals. I think they're unnecessary and a huge pain in the ass. Strike one. Strike two is the label which I really don't like. I prefer modern style with almost all things aesthetic. Strike three doesn't come, though. I opened the bottle and...
On the PnP: very classic Cab nose -- tobacco, green veggies, bright red fruit, beets, and cigarette ash. The wine was graceful on the palate. Bright acidity, red fruits, beets again, and a little green. Very structured. Strong, fine tannins.
After an hour decant: definitely more pyrazine characteristics, tannins come through stronger, red fruits still present, but have moved back a bit. Paired very well with salt and pepper filets, sweet potato fries, and a wedge salad with blue cheese dressing and that balsamic we all love.
Conclusion: this is definitely not your Napa Cab fruit bomb. It is far more restrained (low alc., little oak influence, no sweetness from RS or fruit, etc.) and what I'd consider more "classic." SWMBO prefers big fruit in her wines so she didn't love it. Personally, I rather enjoy the Napa Cab fruit bomb style, also. However, this wine is elegant, medium-bodied, and well structured, and just enjoyable. I think it should sleep for at least a couple years and will benefit from doing so. Drinking windows are always guesses, but this wine seems to have the stuffing to age and show better than it does now (not saying it doesn't show well now at all).
I am guessing this will be a 2-pack for $89.99 assuming it's a 2-pack of the RRV CS. Retail is $67/bottle. That's pricey. However, this is a "boutique winery" at 350 cases (the bottles are individually numbered). So the value of a bottle changes, IMO, if you care about such things as the size of a winery.
If I may soapbox a bit. Many people on these boards claim to want hard-to-find, boutique-type wines on wine.woot while complaining about cost. Sub-$30 boutique wines are nigh impossible to come by. If you want to support a very small producer, you're going to pay the bucks to do so. This is an opportunity to do just that. Is it better than other $67 wines? Perhaps not. But at such low production numbers, it provides an opportunity if you are so inclined to want such a thing.
There's about a glass left in the decanter which I will try tomorrow early (10 AM PST) since some of you don't finish bottles in one night (weirdos!). And I'm always around so if you have any questions or want some palate calibration, Pat Benetar me. Sounds dirty. What I mean is, fire away. Uh... kind of sounds dirty, too. Whatever.
"If drinking is bitter, change yourself to wine." -Rainer Maria Rilke
"Champagne is a very kind and friendly thing on a rainy night." -Isak Dinesen