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April 19, 2010

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Lenn:

I love the idea of revisiting wines you've reviewed. Too many do not realize that scores, ratings, tasting notes, etc. are a function of time, and really only 100% applicable to that particular bottle and date of tasting.

Tom: Absolutely. And this little exercise is also a reminder that no one really knows what a wine's drinking window is or will be. Makes me think that maybe I shouldn't bother with them anymore (not that I do that a lot).

That's not entirely correct Lenn, I think. It isn't hard to know a wine's drinking window if you have experience with it, its history, and with examples of the wine at different ages. Certainly Mr. Rothschild knows the drinking window of a Rothschild since there are dozens of examples to learn from.

The problem here is that we have a wine without history, and all the "long term aging in mind" doesn't make it last for the long term. Not without cryogenics anyway.

Aging is about balance and substance, but mostly about balance. All the best intentions in the world isn't going to make a 2003 improve. It just wasn't built for it.

And as we all know, improving, and aging are two totally different things.

Jim: A fair point. I guess over decades of tasting your estate's wines, you can learn how they will TEND to evolve.

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