The 2003, though still just 13% alcohol, seems to have more stiffness to the structure, more tannin and more density than the 2002. It's harder, chewier, less open and more challenging. It may also age more slowly. Right now there is a certain stemminess and bitterness to the tannins that keeps the fruit at bay, though the aromas seem to promise more. It may profit from an hour or two of breathing.
Paul Gregutt is a Contributing Editor for Wine Enthusiast magazine, a founding member of the magazine’s Tasting Panel, and reviews the wines of Oregon and Canada. The author of the critically-acclaimed Washington Wines & Wineries—The Essential Guide, he consulted on the Pacific Northwest entries in current versions of The World Atlas of Wine and The Oxford Companion to Wine.Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.