IWC 93pts - Winemaker Notes - How fitting that after a hiatus due to wild fires on the north coast in 08, the superlative vineyard for 09 was McDougall. A Warm, dry spring encouraged early budbreak, flowering and conversion to ripening metabolism; while a cool fall gave us a very long year for phenolic and flavor ripening. The naturally substantial tannins of the high Sonoma ridges were coaxed into a lushness that normally takes years to acquire, while compromising none of the searing cranberry/cherry fruit, solid minerality and backbone that are the hallmark of the place. Aromas of Bing cherry, cranberry and pomegranate lead to nuances of chipped granite and sassafras. The impression in the mouth is that of exceptionally sweet but substantial, dusty tannins, which support the candied toffee/cherry and berry fruit. The tannins and acidity carry the floral and mineral notes though the lengthy, lively finish.