Silky deep ruby, thinning ever-so-slightly at the abrupt edge. A rotund, rosy ripe plum instantly pumps out of the nose settling down to rich Tootsie-Pop, Good & Plenty, and a welcome streak of mint. Entry-level ideas of plump candy are squashed with each minute of air as a steady march of structure, peat and smoke advances out of the bouquet. Let’s decant this thing firmly. Plenty of time in, grainy wet denim and scorched earth tell a ripe ripe story.
In the mouth, far more streamlined than you would expect. More flabby dreams are dashed as a clear stream of icy water carries the cool forest depths over your tongue and finishes everything off with GOBS of cranberry and pie-cherry morphing slowly to rose-hip tannin.
I don’t know what’s in this, and I’m guessing it is approaching 15-oh, but it’s damn good. Petit Verdot and Malbec? Cab-franc and bec? You know how sometimes a really ripe wine gets fatter and fatter as you progress through the stages of it? This does precisely the opposite. A chubby chunk in the nose and a lean, mean machine in the finish.
2015 GRATUS ‘Red Wine’ Napa Valley 14.8