Bright ruby. Complex bouquet melds dried cherry, licorice, potpourri and minerals, plus a subtle smoky undertone. Very sweet and creamy in texture, offering intense red fruit flavors that gain power and spiciness with aeration. Picks up notes of cassis and cherry pit on the back end and finishes with impressive breadth and lingering sweetness. This is still a baby. By the way, the 1998 has years ahead of it but is showing a wild, pungent bouquet of dried herbs and flowers and excellent, mineral-driven red fruit right now.
Robert Parker 93
The 2005 Valbuena is purple/black in color with an alluring nose of pain grille, pencil lead, Asian spices, espresso, incense, and blackberry. On the palate it reveals its elegant personality, round texture, savory flavors, and lengthy, pure finish. It merits 4-6 years of cellaring to fully unwind and will offer prime drinking from 2014 to 2030.
Anticipated maturity: 2014-2030