This time I chose the 2014 Matthiasson Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Matthiasson makes wonderful wines that blend the vividness of California with the structure and balance of France. (Jason, photo of label below.) But I digress. Usual protocol. My notes:
First impression: first one is more floral and fruitier, second two more masked with a cedary spicy note, so dbb. No discernible difference on the palate. In this case the masking note is quite nice. At one point I almost wanted to reverse the classification of the first and third bottles, for bbd. But I started to get confused, so went with my first impression, even though it has failed me the last couple of times.
Failed me again: the correct configuration was my second guess, bbd. I seem to be having trouble second guessing whether I should second guess. Still, either way, the thing I thought I was detecting—the presence or absence of a masking note—is consistent with previous breathing experiments with cabernet and Bordeaux blends. So I think there’s something in that hypothesis, and maybe I should try to design an experiment to test it explicitly. Perhaps a very long decant to emphasize the difference.
John Gilman’s often talks about a top note of bla bla bla. I think I’m beginning to understand that, and used the phrase in my tasting note for this wine.