Wine Advocate (WA)
The 2004 Variation One is the most disappointing of the group, if only in comparison to what has been produced before and after. A blend of 60% Syrah and 40% Merlot, the wine is elegant, medium-bodied, shows some hints of coffee bean and blue and black fruits, but then shortens out in mid-palate, and there is somewhat of an abrupt finish. Drink it over the next 4-5 years. – Robert M. Parker, Jr. – 26-12-2006
Vinous Media (VM)
(a 60/40 blend of merlot and syrah) Good deep medium ruby. Expressive aromas of black raspberry, licorice and dark chocolate, plus a medicinal menthol element. Juicy, tight and backward; this boasts excellent ripeness but is dominated by its acid structure and big tannins today. Like the 2004 cabernet, it comes across as a bit spiky on the back and in need of patience. The tannins of the 2005 seem much finer.