Compelling, attention grabbing. There is a lot to decipher here. First, heady aromatics of violets, blackberry and mulberries. Cherry clafoutis, blood plums, brioche. Next to emerge are the leafy, herbaceous notes, perfectly rendered without any suggestion of under ripeness. Mulberry leaf, bay leaf, wet tobacco/cigar box add further intrigue. Classic English baking spices lurk quietly in the background.
After the aromatic impression, one might expect a forbidding palate. Not so. It’s remarkably approachable, yet clearly built for a long spell in the dungeon.
The cool dark fruits are very concentrated and varietal. The leafy notes on the nose morph into char-grilled savoury flavours of grilled capsicum and cumin spiced eggplant, infused by sandalwood and cherry wood smoke. The tannins are graphite-like, fine but reassuringly persistent, with a faint suggestion of bitter dark chocolate. One for the long haul.