In 1988 there are 575 cases of Romanee-Conti. Consumers should be deliriously happy, considering there were only 225 cases in 1987. It is more backward than the 1987, 1986, or 1985, and is one of the fullest and most tannic examples of Romanee-Conti I have tasted this decade. It may even outlive the otherworldly 1985. It is staggeringly concentrated with a bouquet that almost defies articulation. There is no doubting what it is and who made it. It is a flashy, dramatic wine with astonishing length and mystique. I would not dare touch a bottle before the mid- to late nineties. The prices for the wines of the Domaine de la Romanee-Conti may be exorbitant but the quality of the wines produced in the eighties is truly remarkable. The 1988s are celestial wines selling at stratospheric prices. The 1988 production was twice what it was in 1987, but the same as in 1985. The 1988s are fuller-bodied, deeper, more concentrated wines than the superb 1987s, and will need some time in the cellar to shed their generous amounts of tannin. The only vintage they can be favorably compared with is the 1985 vintage, and the 1985s were a great deal more forward and flattering to taste when young. There is more depth in the 1988s than in the 1986s or even the superb 1980s (which turned out to be the finest wines made in that underrated vintage).