This is probably the tightest-structured vintage we have had for this wine. It is most like 1997, but with less reliance on acidity and more on full, ripe tannins. Fortunately, it possesses some perfumes like the 1998. With such concentration, this wine had remained relatively closed during its usual gentle handling and minimal racking, thus it required more lengthy barrel aging. It was bottled without filtration weeks later than normal (just about in time for the open house). It has loosened up a bit, revealing plum, black pepper and blueberry flavors with a spicy cedar nuance. The release to restaurants and wine shops has been pushed back a couple of months when the wine will be more composed from any “bottle shock.” No worry, this should ultimately be one of the most satisfying vintages of this wine.