Thursday, June 30, 2011

Two Rockin' Napa Cab Blends

It takes a lot for a wine to stand out in a tasting of 20+ wines, especially when those wines are tasted near the end of the event. The event in question was a wine tasting dinner at the newly-opened steak house Medium Rare in Washington, DC's Cleveland Park neighborhood. About a dozen friends got together and tasted through a slew of wines. Some were good, some were not. But two were truly great. And they both happened to be Napa Cabernet Sauvignon-based blends from the 2005 vintage. Napa Winemakers had a great year in 2005, and I've found the best Napa cabernets from 2005 to show lush, dark fruit and solid tannic structure. They have been delicious in youth, but the best 2005s have the stuffing to improve for decades. Enough lollygagging. The two wines are:

2005 Dancing Hares Vineyard - USA, California, Napa Valley
this is a superb bordeaux blend. pitch color. on the nose: dark, dark cherries, dark chocolate shavings, loam, charcoal. the nose is nothing short of intoxicating. the palate is so dense and viscous. this is ridiculously rich. you can't even think while sipping it because all your brain cares about is processing the unbelievable amount of flavors and sensations. its like paint drying on your palate. gorgeous finish. the intensity of this wine is matched only by its deliciousness. (95 pts.)

2005 Colgin IX Estate - USA, California, Napa Valley
what a cabernet blend. definitely one of the best i've had in a very long time. the nose is a wave of gorgeous aromas: red licorice, currant jam, charcoal, pencil shavings, plum pits. the palate is as round and beautiful as marilyn monroe. the tannins are grippy and dry, providing superb structure. the wine glides across the palate like melted butter, leaving flavors of cassis, plums, charcoal and toast to mingle on the incredibly long finish. this is one hell of a sexy wine. yes, it's young, but it's too good. (96 pts.)

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