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by Fred McMillin
Should You Age
|Price||The Winners||The Wine|
|1998 Vintage||Older Vintages|
|$8||X||Cabernet Sauvignon, Stone Creek, Appellation - California|
|$10||X||Merlot, Haywood, California|
|$10||X||1997 Bearitage, Gundlach-Bundschu, California (Merlot, Cab, etc.)|
|$16||X||1997 Sangiovese, Beaulieu, Signet Collection, Napa Valley|
|$17||X||Zinfandel, Geyser Peak, Sonoma County|
|$17||X||1997 Cabernet Sauvignon, Kendall-Jackson, Vintner's Reserve, California|
|$18||X||1996 Merlot, Chateau St. Jean, Sonoma County|
|$20||X||1996 Zinfandel, Steele, Mendocino County, DuPratt Vineyard|
|$20||X||1996 Zinfandel, Sebastiani, Sonoma Valley, Domenici Vineyard|
|$20||X||Caberenet Sauvignon Reserve, Clos du Bois, Alexander Valley|
|$23||X||Zinfandel, Grgich Hills, Sonoma and Napa|
|$30||X||Pinot Noir, Kenwood, Russian River Valley, Olivet Vineyards|
|$32||X||1997, Pinot Noir, Byron, Sierra Madre Vineyard, Santa Maria Valley|
Six of the younger (1998) reds won, while seven of the older vintages won.
Cabernet Sauvignon is known for its ability to improve with age. Yet, in this tasting, two of the three Cab winners were the younger 1998s.
Aging modestly-priced California reds is not worth the trouble. Buy now, drink now.
About the Writer
Fred McMillin, a veteran wine writer, has taught wine history for 30 years on three continents. For information about the wine courses he teaches every month at either San Francisco State University or San Francisco City College (Fort Mason Division), please fax him at (415) 567-4468.
This page created September 2001