Monday, March 30, 2009

Castello Banfi ExcelsuS: 1997 and 2003

More than a decade old and still showing remarkable brightness despite its maturity, the 1997 is still a classic. Cardamom-dusted raspberries and a hint of coffee define the nose, while still-fresh berries and a core of acidity keep it all lively on the palate. It’s ready to go now, but another year or two will really allow the flavors—still approaching maturity, unlike the nose, which has already arrived—to shine just as brightly.

The 2003, on the other hand, is still in a quiet phase, its aromas surprisingly subtle and just hinting at raspberry, cream, and nuts. The tannins here still have great grip, though when they loosen up a touch with air, the concentrated fruit of the merlot expresses itself with real exuberance and elegance. Hold on to this one for another couple of years, or decant it for an hour or two and enjoy it now.


Anonymous said...

Have never tried the '97 however now after this post I will have to try to find a bottle to have on a special occasion.

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