Warm weather conditions caused spring to start alarmingly early in 1997. We had barely finished pruning the vines when the leaves came roaring out to meet the sun. It was just as well because the summer temperatures were very cool, requiring more than 120 days (bloom to harvest) to ripen the fruit fully. This is in the expected range for the best vintages, allowing the color and tannin to fully mature and the fruit flavors to fully develop. Once again, nature and our unique hillside vineyards have conspired to produce extraordinary grapes with distinct Michel-Schlumberger qualities.
Not since 1994 have we seen wines like this -- with remarkable intensity of fruit accompanied by profound weight in the mouth. The vineyard's hallmark ripe blackberry and cherry aromas are well complemented by the suggestion of exotic, aromatic spices. On the palate, it is astonishing in its texture as layer after layer of flavor linger -- a real mouthful of wine. This is a remarkable Cabernet from an outstanding vintage and a joy to pull from your cellar on any occasion.