An amazing wine, given the vintage. Huge, rich, mouthfilling blackberry and cassis flavors coat the palate and go on forever. They went the extra mile to isolate the ripest blocks in this spotty vintage. The wine is thick and vibrant, a lip-smacking experience if ever there was one. Editors’ Choice. —S.H.
A delicious and balanced wine that suggests the greatness of this vintage. It hits the mouth with firm, dusty tannins, and then the flavors explode. You’ll find blackberries, cherries and currants, intensely sweet and concentrated, and lavish but appropriate new oak. Finishes with an acidic verve that suggests aging. A blend of all five classic Bordeaux varieties.
A Napa winemaker told me that “olive” is not a fashionable word to use with Cabernet. Maybe, but the olives here are beautiful. They’re the black, French-cured type, enriched with cassis and flashy new oak, and the flavors are balanced with wonderfully rich tannins and fine acids. What a fabulous job Hendry is doing with these Block 8 Cabs. Drink now–2010.
This is really a different kind of California Chardonnay. It offers apples and pears, with expressive acidity and a powerful dose of lees. The oak is there, in the smoke and vanilla, but plays a subsidiary role. It possesses those undefinable qualities of elegance and complexity.
After a disappointing 2000, Hendry’s Block 8 returns to form with this ultrarich, super-fruity Cab. It’s massive in black cherry pie flavor, drizzled with crème de cassis and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, and finishes very long and dry. However, the tannins remain sizable at four-plus years. Best now through 2010.
Even in the cool 2011 vintage, this wine really shines. It’s bone dry, low in alcohol and high in acidity, making it a delicious accompaniment to a range of foods. Complex citrus, white flower and mineral flavors carry it over the goal line. This is one of the best Albariños of the vintage.
A great success, rich and firm, and notable for bright acidity and a stony, mineral quality. Yet it turns lush and opulent in the mouth, with deep, ripe flavors of pears. The spicy finish is so sweet in oaky spice, it’s almost like white chocolate. A fascinating study in contrasts.