Saturday, November 11, 2006
2004 Mount Pleasant Norton
Towards the beginning of this blog we reviewed a white wine from Mount Pleasant negatively. A bit later, we reviewed a $25 Cabernet Sauvignon, and ultimately felt that while it was okay, it was not worth anywhere near the asking price. This is the only winery which we’re “members” of and I have to say that two mediocre wines in a row really shook my confidence.
So, here we are with a 2004 Norton. Norton is a varietal found in the Midwest and if you tour wineries in the area you’ll find a lot of terrible wine made from it. When we visited Mount Pleasant, we both agreed it was the best Norton we had, but also the most expensive at $35.
Norton’s typically are dark and this one is no exception. It’s dark purple, but looking at a full glass, it almost seems black.
The nose has lots of pepper, black fruit, and a touch of alcohol.
On the palate, this reminds me a bit of Syrah. Lots of pepper, licorice, and spice on the palate, but there’s also plenty of blackberry–to the point that I’d call it jammy. As soon as it hits the tongue, it seems to taste like blueberry but that changes to blackerry. It’s a nice but strange balance of strong jam and strong earth–a big wine for sure. I thought I was getting tobacco, but I think it’s more just smoke. The tannins are extremely smooth and silky, no burn or anything of that sort.
The finish is long–starting with prunes and fading away to raspberries.
I’m glad that my memory has held up....if this one was a disappointment, I probably would have quit our club membership. This is, hands down, the best Norton I’ve encountered. An excellent wine, regardless of region or varietal. Complex enough for the nerds, yet smooth enough for the friends-–highly recommended.