An honest-to-goodness treat today; the opportunity to taste a genuine rarity: the 2001 Ridge Vineyards Lytton Springs.
I tasted with my colleague Sam Howles-Banerji.
We opened, we double-decanted, we poured, we smelled …
I couldn’t think of anything but Indian food.
I was thinking Coriander, Cardamom, and Cumin.
As Sam said, The Three Cs.
Not so much turmeric. As discussed; the wine was less “yellow-y” than that.
Really, just The Three Cs.
Sam swirled, Sam tasted, Sam wrote.
Just a fascinating display of aromatics altogether; totally fascinating.
Unbelievably, Sam happened to have brought Indian for lunch.
“Should I bring it out?”
He brought it out. We smelled. The Three Cs indeed.
That said, with an hour of aeration (when I began my notes), the exotic spice had subsided to a certain extent, reclining back into a pleasantly rustic cushion of almost claret-like sophistication.
The first frequencies on the palate were immediately lower-tuned; rich with dark berry notes and black herbs; speckled with a punchy minerality.
The earthiness transformed into something more savory and meatier mid-palate; not gamey per se, but with a certain lightly charred umami melody.
The finish was a pristine act of reconciliation, drawing spice, earth and herb together with layered fruit and a sweeter note unique to the lingering post-finish echo.
In summary, a delicious wine in an excellent stage of development.
What a treat!