(WS=93) A big, burly red, with lots of charred oak and smoky bacon character coloring the rich, ripe crushed berry fruit. Hints of flowers and black cardamom add to the complexity. Full-bodied, with well-poised, velvety tannins that capture the flavors and drive them through the long finish. Needs cellaring, but this is fabulous now too. Best after 2010. 2,080 cases made (AG=92) The 2003 Valpolicella Superiore comes across as shockingly primary for a five-year old wine. Masses of jammy dark fruit flow onto the palate in a concentrated, generous style. The firm tannins are those of the torrid 2003 vintage, yet this broad-shouldered, expansive wine has more than enough fruit to provide balance. Notes of chocolate, leather, coffee and sweet spices gradually emerge with air, yet this remains a backward, unyielding wine at the moment. As with the 2004, this wine needs serious bottle age, or eight to ten hours of air for those adventurous enough to take it for a test drive now.