Black impenetrable ruby with basically no edge. Huge layers of tobacco roll off in in waves of bell pepper green olives and mushroom-bedding. Copious chunks of fiery spice and a ting of alcohol keep the incredibly ripe fruit from being cloying, but flabbiness is definitely something which crosses the mind. It has a *mouthfeel* in the bouquet you know is going to borderline on sumptuousness but still has plenty of other elements keeping it in check.
Yes, this is a super-market wine. Owned by who-knows-who… Treasury? Constellation? Kobrand? LVMH? Kraft? Michelin? Del Taco? I can’t keep up. And every year when Von’s does its 40% off thing-a-ma-dealio, I find a nicer store a buy a few of these. Been a fan for years. I try every year to convince myself it isn’t sliding down that fat watershed of glycerin-ey, over-oaked, corporate-lab-produced homogeneity, but it gets harder and harder. Still, I love this wine. Even with the near-heretical addition of SY. Hey, it’s their blend and they can put what they want in it. I’d like it a whole lot more if it were strictly BDX, but it’s what makes 19 Block 19 Block. Decanted hard.
In the mouth, Perfectly ripe fruit hits hard and bounces around with sharp acidity and pure mountain briar while a tannic note begins blaring. This is not an elegant wine. It is about as refined as it is going to get for this party. A chalky grit grabs on to every polish-point you can find. Infantile, broken-root bitterness defies the super-market stereotype. This will be interesting at age 10 and 15.
2010 HESS COLLECTION Meritage Block 19 Mt. Veeder Napa Valley Cab/Bec/SY/ME 14.4