M. Chapoutier Ermitage Le Meal 1998
WA96: The 1998 Ermitage Le Meal rouge represents the essence of Hermitage - a wine of elegance, power, symmetry, and extraordinary purity. Aromas and flavors of black and red fruits as well as liquid granite emerge in this superb, multi-layered wine of fabulous intensity and length. The finish lasts for nearly a minute. The tannin is high, and a decade of cellaring is warranted. This 1998 will last for half a century.
VM93+: Bright full ruby. Musky, minerally aromas of black fruits and espresso. Tightly wrapped and powerful, with vibrant acids giving the dark berry flavors great cut and penetration. Very powerful wine, finishing with great length and hard tannins. This wine will spend at least 18 months in barrel, says assistant enologist Valerie Mathieu; the '97, in comparison, was bottled last January.