1994 Ritchie Creek Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa (12.7%)
That's not a typo folks. The label shows 12.7% alcohol.
The cork crumbled a bit upon extraction which caused some concern, but that concern was quickly dismissed upon the first sip. No sign of oxidation. The color had the slightest fade to it on the rim which I would expect to be perfectly normal for a 12 year old Cali-Cab. The fruit played a supporting cast to the earth, leather, cigar-box and other secondary characteristics. Wonderfully refreshing acids and a finish that actually "finished". No detectable oak to this taster. The wine continued to open and become more expressive during the course of the meal. Simply wonderful.
Ritchie Creek doesn't get much chatter on the internet fora, but I have heard from a reliable source that in the 1995-1998 time frame they changed their style to become more modern. That is, more new oak and higher alcohol levels, etc. Can anyone confirm this?
I also enjoyed the older, sans glitter, style label.