Ridge Vineyards Monte Bello 2004 750ml
SKU: jw80

Ridge Vineyards Monte Bello 2004

  • st94
  • wa91
  • ws86


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Winter rains were scarce this year, and total rainfall down twenty-five percent. Budbreak came early, but bloom was late, delayed by cold April weather. Having set a small crop for the third consecutive year, the vines required little thinning. Harvest began on schedule; most parcels were picked in the first two weeks of October. Four days later, heavy rains drenched the remaining grapes-a quarter of the crop. Fortunately, sun and wind dried the clusters fully before the next storm, and we finished harvest with no damage to the fruit. The forty small lots fermented to dryness on their natural yeasts in nine days on average. Twothirds of them completed natural malolactic in barrel, and remained on the lees for five months. The rest finished in tank, and were racked off their lees to barrel within one month. In a series of tastings conducted from late January through March, we selected seventeen lots for the first Monte Bello assemblage. Another was included in May, one more in December. Eighteen months in barrel has begun to integrate the firm tannins and rich texture of this fine vintage. Unusually appealing as a young wine, it will gain further depth and complexity over the next fifteen to twenty years.
International Wine Cellar
  • st94

"Ruby-red. Brooding aromas of cassis, blackberry, minerals, bitter chocolate, tobacco and fresh herbs. Fat, broad and sweet, with nicely integrated acidity and complex hints of leather, herbs, licorice, chocolate and minerals. This cheek-coating wine is a bit more filled in than the 2003 release. Finishes with superfine tannins and lovely subtle persistence." Score:91-94 barrel tasting

Stephen Tanzer, September 2007
Wine Advocate
  • wa91

The 2004 Monte Bello (76% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Merlot, and the rest Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc) reveals a similar dark ruby/purple color, but it is not as thick looking as the 2003 or 2005. A lighter, more elegant example of Monte Bello, the finesse-styled 2004 does not possess the power one normally sees in this wine. It offers pure fruit, a pretty, St.-Julien-like style, notes of cedar, spice box, herbs, background oak, and red as well as black currants, and silky tannin. It is capable of lasting 15-20 years.

Robert Parker, February 2010
Wine Spectator
  • ws86

Tart and a bit green and leafy around the edges, with spice, dusty red plum and subtle minerally notes. Ends with fleshy tannins and good length. Balanced, intense and persistent. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc. Best from 2010 through 2017.

James Laube, November 15, 2008

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