Easily the greatest Dominus in memory. Comes down on the drier, lower alcohol and less ripe side than many Cabs in its league, yet lacks for nothing in complexity and sheer deliciousness. Tantalizes with blackberry tart, cherry, carob bean and a Pinot Noir-esque cola-rhubarb richness that retreats behind rich tannins and an earthiness suggesting sweet blond tobacco…
As good as the 2001 Napanook is, this wine is more intense. The fruit is lusher, the oak newer, the control more complete, but the kicker is the tannins. They’re powerful and dusty, and conceal the flamboyance, for now. Needs time; hold until 2010 and beyond.
Deep berry, cinnamon, briar and mint aromas. Firm, even backwards, it is trim and elegant, yet solid. Black fruit and bitter-chocolate flavors abound. The finish is especially tight, with dry tannins and complex mineral and earth elements. Huge but refined, the quintessential iron fist in a velvet glove; it needs time.
Unless you knew that this was Dominus and had tasted older vintages, you might not be impressed. In its youth the wine is tannic and dry and linear. However, it is Dominus and it does need cellaring. Right now it shows blackberry, black currant, cedar and baker’s chocolate flavors. Will slowly open and reach maturity after 2011, and could easily develop for far longer.
Another fine Dominus, dry, well-structured and ageworthy. Lacks the flashiness of the dramatic 2007, but is still ripe and rich enough to drink now, and should develop over the next six years. Rewards for the depth of blackberries, cassis, blueberries and cedar, wrapped into plush tannins.
More balanced than the overripe 2004, the ’05 Dominus is marked by dryness and firm tannins. It’s an obvious cellar candidate. Those tannins, along with unresolved acidity, give the wine a tough, almost rustic grittiness now. But there’s an enormous core of black currants, crushed blackberries, anise and cedar that’s deep and balanced. Should develop bottle…
This is the first release of Napanook, the second wine from Dominus. It has lovely, approachable fruit in the red-cherry, red-plum spectrum; the finish is medium length and silky. It’s tasting very good now, and should improve in bottle over the next three to five years. The blend is 74% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Cabernet Franc and 13% Petit Verdot.
Very dry, and young in its fresh tannins and acids framing ripe, grapy currant flavors, mocha, vanilla and sweet dill. Very fine and balanced, with a powerful finish. Beautiful now, but should develop through this decade.