94 Pahlmeyer - Printable Version

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- RickBin389 - 03-21-1999

Helen Turley's wines never cease to amaze me, this wine is no exception....Open an hour or two before tasting & you will be treated to a gem..this wines evolves as the bottle subsides....big, minty & peppery when you first tasted - then subsiding with a mouthful of ripe red fruits once it opens.....great backbone & complexity - yet does she do it? big bucks & hard to find - but I think worth it...any pro's have ageing info on this wine????

- Van The Man - 03-22-1999

Rick, I wouldn't call myself a "pro" but I have a bit of experience with this wine.

It's built a bit sturdier than the usual Merlot in California. And although Merlot can be a finicky grape at times, the '94 growing season was absolute perfection for California Merlot. I would expect this wine will age nicely for 5 to 7 years and then plateau with a life somewhere in the 10 to 12 year range before it starts to head south.

A way to help determine ageworthiness is best judge for yourself the balance of fruit and tannins. Take the wine and swirl it real good in your mouth, almost like mouthwash. After you swallow it, try to put a count to how long you can feel the tannins on the toungue and rook of your mouth and how long the fruit flavor lasts. If they last together and are in harmony, the wine is well balanced and should progress nicely assuming the structure is in place; ie, the tannins and acids. If OTOH, the tannins are more noticeable than the fruit, then you have to start wondering a bit. History can be a teacher here as traditionally, Bordeaux wines are tannic and awkward in their youth.

When the fruit is up front and way out in front of the tannins and acids, as is typical of many California reds, that's a wine that will not likely have a real longlife.

My best advise is to keep practicing! <g>