03 Cuvaison, Napa Valley Carneros Pinot Noir
Big flavors of strawberries and savory cinammon/clove hit with the texture of velvet and burlap. This is an aggressive wine from the start with a mildly mushroomy aroma that pricks the nose with its alcoholic exhaust. Ultra-ripe and fiercely textured, it should pair well with rare meats. The cranberry-like tartness, whole black cherry sweetness, and subtle vanilla and caramel flavors of good French oak keep the wine nicely balanced in the finish--despite the burning. I'd love to try this in the snow.