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Old 12-09-2005, 01:14 PM
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Default St. Julien Lookalike? Almost

*1996 Yarra Yering Dry Red #1 - Australia, Victoria, Yarra Valley
Tasted with an assortment of cheeses after a cookout dinner at Bryan
and Amy's. Young claret purple has softened to red except at the very
center. Nose is completely closed at first, taking about ten or fifteen
minutes to open up. Once open, the nose is a dead ringer for a St.
Julien like Beychevelle or Ducru -- has that elegance masking weight
that I associate with St. Julien, with classic cassis, cedar, graphite,
a little herb, and a dose of sweet vanilla. On the palate, it is of
middle weight with substantial but fairly well resolved tannins. Nice
dry (if a little short) finish from the silky dark berry and deep
cherry fruit. Perhaps a the high degree of ripeness on entry says
Australia, but otherwise still seems like a good St. Julien from an
average year. After another fifteen minutes or so, though, it all
starts to come apart. Nose turns a little dusty, fruit a little muddy
and disjointed and the oak steps up to dominate the finish. This could
have been a result of mismatched cheeses or of a dumb phase, but
troubles me enough that I wouldn't buy it without tasting again.

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