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David M. Bueker

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WTN: The Larkmead Ascending

by David M. Bueker » Tue Oct 27, 2020 6:42 pm

2017 Larkmead Vineyards Firebelle - USA, California, Napa Valley (10/27/2020)
If you are planning to open a bottle of this, give it a very long decant. I went with four hours after a double decant, and it was barely sufficient. Even after that amount of time it was still tight, and only started to show itself a full two hours after I started sampling it, six hours after opening! When it did start to show its cards I got something that kept to a classical Bordeaux blend profile. It carried tart cassis fruit, a dusty, earthy undertone, and very well managed tannins. Even when it was still closed in it was not austere or painful. It was just shy, poking it’s nose out every once in a while, but refusing to come out and play. I finally put 1/3 of the bottle aside for 48 hours, and on revisiting it had developed greater palate presence and richness, adding a subtle cherry tone to the cassis fruit, and bringing a little more California sunshine to the mix. Overall it’s a classically styled wine, and I am all in on that.
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