Producer: Early Mountain Vineyards
Vineyard: Quaker Run Vineyard
Grapes: 83% tannat, 15% cabernet franc, 2% petit verdot
* Review sample provided by the winery
Early Mountain Vineyards 2017 Quaker Run Vineyard Tannat
I taste a lot of wine too young – wines that ultimately benefit from more time bottle to continue their development and show their best. That comes with the territory. I usually taste wines when they are released, not when they are peaking. They are almost always still approachable at release.
But, I rarely taste a wine like this one. This one needs more time in the bottle. If you have a bottle – and there weren't many made – I'd hold onto it for at least a year.
Poured right after opening, it's big and sturdy and a bit angular – and frankly not all that giving. But on days two and three open, it opens up and becomes a standout – and not just because you don't see much varietal tannat in the East.
Aromas of very ripe brambly fruit – mostly blackberry but also some raspberry – are accented by notes of grilled herbs, bay leaf, fennel frond, and nutmeg.
The palate is full-bodied but wears the 15.3% abv well. The fruit turns black and blue here, with blackberries, blueberries, and plums along with a savory frame of herbs and spice. The tannins are broad and mouth-filling, with a powdery feel on the end of a long finish.
This wine is a perfect example of why I taste every wine over several days. Without that patience, I wouldn't have had the same experience.