Harlan Napa Valley Red Wine 2005
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Wine AdvocateNot unexpectedly, the 2005 Harlan Estate performed slightly better than it did last year. As these wines often do, it continues to put on weight as it is bottled very late by Napa standards, and there is no fining or filtration. The 2005 exhibits a gorgeous thick-looking, ruby/purple color in addition to a beautiful nose of burning embers interwoven with creme de cassis, roasted meats, sweet black truffles, and spring flowers. A hint of lead pencil shavings also emerges from this cuvee, which seems to want to be both a Pauillac and a ripe vintage of La Mission Haut Brion. Full-bodied, dense, pure, and revealing sweeter tannin than I remember, it can be drunk now, but it will no doubt display even greater complexity in 10, 20, and 30 years.
Wine EnthusiastSmells a bit minty and peppery, but once in the mouth, turns ultra-generous in black currant, chocolate-covered mint and spicy cedar flavors. Massive, yet refined and elegant, and even with the firm tannins, grows more charming as it warms in the glass. Very fine quality, and likely to hold for many years.
Wine SpectatorTightly wound and closed, with notes of pencil lead and shavings, graphite, mineral and dried berry. The flavors are intense and persistent, without too much weight. This is graceful in its own way.--Non-blind Harlan retrospective (2010). Drink now through 2028.