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Judd's Hill Merlot Napa Valley 2007

Winery: Judd's Hill
Color: Red
Varietal: Merlot
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3.368 5 0.5
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Member Reviews for Judd's Hill Merlot Napa Valley

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Snooth User: rmcunningham
3.00 5
Vintage: 2006 05/24/2010

Three glasses

Snooth User: Agent Red
4.50 5
Vintage: 1999 06/26/2008

Mission Codename: Music to our lips Redux Operative: Agent Red Objective: Infiltrate Judd’s Hill winery, penetrate deep into their archives and return with the last of their fabled 1999 Estate Blend Mission Status: Accomplished! Current Winery: Judd’s Hill Wine Subject: 1999 Estate Blend (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc) Winemaker: Art Finkelstein Backgrounder: Our Operatives we so enamored with the Judd’s Hill wine we featured here a little while back, that they have been demanding that we send an Agent to retrieve another wine. Our new friends at Judd’s Hill readily opened up their private vault to us and, together, we selected their beautiful 1999 Cab blend, a perfect and ready-to-drink blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Read Agent Red’s complete tasting profile below, followed by his original mission report. Wine Spies Tasting Profile: Look – Great color on this ‘older’ vintage wine. Where we have seen 1999’s that show as brown or slightly orange, indicating poor aging, this wine is deep burgundy to garnet, with a deep concentration of purple-burgundy at its heart, concentrated color to its edges, and a very bouncy surface that takes ages to settle when swirled as it leaves behind chunky that make their way slowly down the glass Smell – Dark and deeply layered with concentrated fruit of dark plum, mixed dark berries, ripe raspberry, dark and smoky blueberry with spice, licorice, older oak and a wonderful and subtle shot of Bazooka Joe Bubble Gum! Feel – Soft, then mouth-coating, rich and round, this wine has a wonderful feel that is at first wet, but then soft to medium tannins grip in coating the mouth and lips with a slightly dryness Taste – Rich, deep concentrations of dark stonefruit, with obvious red cherry, smoked acerola cherry, blackberry preserves, subtle cigar box, spice, licorice and green sweetwoods Finish – Big, dark, sweet, tasty, flavorful and delicious, with flavors that go on and on, with supple tannins that add a hint of tart dryness Conclusion – Sha-BANG! Another mouthwatering masterpiece from Art Finklestein, master winemaker at Judd’s Hill. It must be so gratifying to blend a great wine and then to pop open a bottle nearly 10 years after making it, only to discover that it has evolved and aged so beautifully. Winemaking is an art and a science that we are always in awe of, particularly when experiencing a wine like today’s amazing blend. As great as this wine is today, we can’t wait to try a bottle every few years. Be sure to pick up enough to enjoy a bottle now, and then again after a bit more aging. Mission Report: What follows is our original mission report, in which Agent Red first comes to meet Judd’s Hill Winery It was the end of a very long day – and I was dog tired. I had been on a mission in Napa Valley that took way longer that I had anticipated and I still had to drive to Monterey County for an early morning surveillance. I decided to stop in San Francisco for dinner and parked near my favorite Thai restaurant, only to find that it had closed for remodeling. Just great. It was dark, I was feeling glum and I had no idea where to eat. I moped back toward my car and, as I was getting in, heard the thin sound of music coming from a nearby alley. Even though I could not quite make it out over the sounds of the street, it had a lively feel to it and I found myself drawn toward it. As I neared the building that the sweet sounds emanated from , the music became clearer. It was Hawaiian music. Hapa haole Hawaiian music, actually. A great vintage sound, with ukulele and steel guitar and happy vocals. My spirits lifted. That is, until a wall of a man blocked me from entering the building. I looked up… and up… and up some more. A very serious looking Polynesian stared down at me. “Private party, sir, sorry”, he siad in the deepest voice I had ever heard. Before I could answer, a voice from behind me in the alleyway called out, “Its okay, Pea, he’s with me.” (”Pea”?) I turned to see a cardboard box being thrust into my arms. Obviously a case of wine, I went along with this young stranger and followed him inside. He motioned me to set the case down among several other cases of wine. Each box was labeled with “Judd’s Hill”. I set the box down and the smiling stranger extended his hand and said, “Hi, I’m Judd.” Judd’s Hill. Judd. He saw me looking from the wine to him and said, “Yup, my family’s winery! You like wine?” Needless to say, the rest of the evening was filled with frivolity, great wine, cool music, fantastic food and great people. After watching Judd (grape grower, winemaker, musician, performer and artist) and his group, The Maikai Gents Featuring The Mysterious Miss Mauna Loa, perform, Judd told me all about his winemaking family and their artisanal ways. The evening was just what the Spy Doctor ordered and the wine struck me as one of the best I had tasted all year. Right there at the party, Judd agreed to devoting an allocation to our Operatives. My bad-day-turned-great-evening is your reward, dear Operative. Today’s wine is sweet music to your lips! Wine Spies Vineyard Check: The location of the Judd’s Hill winery can be seen in this satellite photo: (visit www.thewinespies.com)


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