Dark ruby with slightly bricking edges. Somewhat forced, awkward nose–that chemical tension cheap cabs and cheap Aussie SY’s suffer from. Sure the deep, ripe fruit flows with the concentrated oak and heady minerality, but it is not graceful. Not to put too fine a point on it, but I picked something tonight I would neither regret or be required to think too hard about. The steely, brittle bouquet is making me wish I had selected deeper and the fact the whole thing is flying in my face is causing problems with the whole *don’t over-think it* clause. This thing has two modes in the nose: an awkward abrupt right wing and a flabby over-fruited left. There is no middle. In the mouth, a generousness of milquetoast fruit and oak with a spicy mint background cause you to forget briefly the nose–or fall firmly on the side of the end justifying the means. This is not a bad wine–it just doesn’t do the kinds of things I like 7yo cab to do to me. In a few more years it will be nothing more than an aged, corporate, cheap wine with fabulous provenance. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. I dare you to do much better in a supermarket for 12 bucks. It is a fabulous, rich, extracted, fairly balanced bottle of significant size. It just isn’t interesting.
2008 CHATEAU ST JEAN Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma Co. 14.2