An example of how educated guesses can sometimes be off-base. Ferraton -- a top-notch producer of Hermitages. 1999 -- a good year in the Northern Rhone. "La Matiniere" is one of Ferraton's negociant (not estate) wines. I didn't figure a good firm to buy mediocre juice when, since it wasn't even their own grapes, they had no downside to not buying it. So for $15, I thought this one would be at least good, and maybe amazing.
Not so. Lightish color, looking mature. Weak nose of leather, tart cherries, and acid. Washed out flavors. Hasn't aged well, and probably wasn't that good to begin with. Oh well. 71.