This wine shows a deep brilliant red hue in the glass. The initial aromas of blackberry jam and cherries mix well with the bouquet of cinnamon and cloves. Unfortunately, those scents are blanketed by alcohol.
The first thing I noticed when I sipped this wine was the astringency. This was followed by blueberries, blackberries and a hint of herbs. The tannins are so bitter and rough that this wine really needs 5+ years to age and the flavors are very tight so they will also benefit from a few years of aging. Unfortunately from what I've read wines with high percentages of alcohol don't age well.
Whoever made the label was brilliant though. They hid the alcohol percentage in the bottom right corner of the label outside of the border in small skinny vertical text so you really have to search for it and at 15.5% percent I can't blame them.
I'm really surprised that Robert Mondavi Winery would release such a poor quality wine. 15.5% is a ridiculously high percentage for Cab. If you don't mind high alcohol then this wine will be pretty good when the tannins have softened and the wine has opened up. On the other hand there are certainly much better offerings out there right now. So this is one wine to avoid. If I had to buy it I'm definitely glad I bought this on sale at Safeway. If I had payed full price I would be quite upset at myself. I usually prefer to buy from tasting rooms or buy wines I know just for this reason. By the way Safeway has been having great sales on wine lately.