This is the first of a brace of bottles purchased in June in a vain attempt to find something to drink while better bottles lie undisturbed for a few months longer.
The bottles are disappointingly dark and difficult to decant, but at least the bottles are moulded with the seal of Croft moulded in. The wine decanted cleanly off a fair amount of very fine sediment, typical of that currently found in the '95/'96 vintages.
As the wine decanted, it released a lovely smell of ripe blueberry fruit.
An hour after decanting, this tasting note was taken:
A mid-red colour, no hint of the purple that I was expecting. Much more of the plum red with even a slight hint of orange on the edge of the rim. On the nose it revealed sweet blueberries and blackcurrants, a bit of dustiness and some pleasant herbiness. The entry is a little hollow, but some fruit develops in the mid-palate, with sweet syrup strawberries and some pleasant acidity giving structure. The aftertaste is quite huge, but starts with too much of a burn from unintegrated alcohol before this fades to leave a fruit and chocolate flavour that fades gradually. Pleasant enough, but not a fabulous wine. Drinking now this would be a little below average but will improve over the next 5-10 years. A score (for current drinking) of 88/100 or 4/5.
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