Many of you might be aware that one of my favourite wines of all time is made by Chateau des Charmes … their 1999 Estate Bottled Cabernet-Merlot still holds a special place on my wine rack and with each bottle I open and consume I relish the drinking of it, while lamenting the loss of yet another friend. While the two subsequent vintages were good I thought they did not measure up to the power and majesty of the ’99. Then along came ’02 – with its dark fruit, smoke and tobacco nose, woodsy tannic taste, and cassis with blackberry flavours. Pay close attention and you’ll pick out hints of cinnamon, vanilla and black cherry too … but those tastes should become more prominent over time. Lie this one down for 5-10 years, but don’t forget to enjoy a bottle every so often along the way, like a child you’ll want to monitor it’s growth.