Thursday, January 22, 2009

Review and Rating: **+ $$ Cameron Hughes Lot 48 Meritage, 2005, Napa Valley, CA

Original Review, March, 2008: This is part of the Cameron Hughes line of one-off bottlings. Lot 48 is a Napa Valley red meritage, consisting of 52% Merlot, 22% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Cabernet Franc and 10% Malbec.

In the glass, it is a very deep magenta. The nose has a sort of piney, pinot-noir aspect, with a bright, high-pitched fruit tone.

The palate is unusual. Very little tone at first - the flavor builds after the first note is struck. Almost like that first note is silent. The tasteless, liquid pool begins to effervesce, then offers up it's cherry zin-like elements, building with a light, sweet oak and furry tannin finish. Longer finish than I might have figured.

I'm giving it two stars, because I can't quite see finding my way back to the wine, but adding a plus because it's so pleasant, and the backward build of the taste is interesting.

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Updated Review, January, 2009: Nose has toned down to a consistent, deeper varietal style. On the palate, the fruit is coming more and more quickly to the fore, leaving a deep cherry robe around the rim. Solid, lightly tannic finish.

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