Drink Date 2018 – 2047
Reviewed by Lisa Perrotti-Brown
Issue Date 31st Aug 2018 Source 238, The Wine Advocate
Medium to deep garnet colored, the 2007 Screaming Eagle opens with a dazzlingly beautiful fragrance of red roses, violets and lavender over a core of red currant jelly, kirsch, cassis and black raspberry layers plus blueberry preserves and stewed tea accents and a waft of cigar box. Medium to full-bodied, the tannins are firm yet wonderfully plush with a great intensity of perfumed red and blue fruits that are at once intense and ethereal, finishing on a lingering mineral note. This 2007 truly shows the personality of Screaming Eagle at its best. It is approachable now, still possessing plenty of primary fruit with those tertiary layers beginning to unfurl and therefore it cannot fail to impress even at this youthful stage. However, give it another 5-7 years to really get the full dividends of careful cellaring.
It would be easy to criticize Screaming Eagle, the tiny boutique producer, with astronomical prices as well as quality. The vineyard, on the valley floor in the eastern Oakville corridor, sells off significant quantities of wine to others. Their production remains 700 to 1,000 cases, along with 500-800 cases of their second wine, Second Flight. There is something magical about this Oakville parcel on the valley floor just under the looming hillsides of such wineries as Phelps, Bacchus and Dalla Valle’s Maya, and across the street from the Rudd Estate, Plumpjack, etc. Different winemaking consultants, from Heidi Barrett, who was in charge when Screaming Eagle soared to prominence in the early nineties, to the present consultant, Michel Rolland, have maintained the remarkable consistency that makes this wine so special. Articulating that is the critic’s challenge, but there is a purity to the crème de cassis fruit that emerges from this vineyard. There is an aromatic intensity and penetration that is truly world-class, and there is incredible balance as well as complexity in these young wines.” Robert Parker