Opaque purple-black color. Can a wine be Rubenesque? The nose delivers opulent decadence, with sweet plum fruit marinated in brown sugar and melted licorice. The wine enters the palate surprisingly lithe, then quickly spreads out and fattens up. There are tiers of aromas and flavors, which include violets, pomegranate, mocha, menthol and a whiff of nuttiness. This may be the finest Hilltop that J. Lohr has produced. Winemaker Steve Peck says it will age comfortably for 10 to 15 years, but why wait? It’s ready to be enjoyed now.
MSRP: $35 (May 2012)
Wine Lines rating: 92