In the Santa Cruz Mountains, welcome spring rains delayed the start of our growing season. We thinned the already moderate crop, and warm October weather brought the fruit to ideal ripeness. Fifteen of the twenty-five parcels were chosen in February as most intense and most typical of the vineyards character. They were assembled in three stages over the following months. Tannins are the biggest to date in the nineties, yet the fullness and complexity of the wine render them supple. Aged almost entirely in new, air-dried american oak, this is classic Monte Bello. Though approachable now, the great 95 vintage will develop fully over the next fifteen to twenty years.