Dunn Vineyards Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon 1999
|Region||California, Napa Valley, Howell Mountain|
The 1999 appeared crimson in the core fading to dark ruby with a medium-deep concentration showing a slight staining of the tears. A few particles of bottle sediment were noted by some. The highly-fragrant nose is highlighted by notes of green tobacco, peppercorn, bergamot, mint and smoked meat. Rich dried fruit like raisins, Christmas pudding and dried currant dominate the fruit spectrum of the aromas. Oak was barely detectable with a hint of cedar and subtle sweet spiciness. In the mouth it immediately attacks with super-concentrated dark fruit leading to fleshy plum and black cherry. The wine is dry but has a juicy sweet fruit core. behind all this lies the flavor and texture of gravel, dusty earth and iron-rich rocks. Violets & hibiscus were noted alongside cocoa and exotic spices in the mid-palate. Although the mouth feel is rich and full-bodied the wines high acidity and the presence of firm tannins contribute to produce yet another outstanding wine with balance, elegance and complexity. It finishes firm and very long. A great wine that beats you up with a feather. Drink now or cellar 2014 - 2025.
Dark and intense, with a tight, compact, tightly wound band of earth, anise, leather, game meat, currant and blackberry, revealing layers of complexity and concentration before the tannins and cedary oak clamp down. Best from 2005 through 2014.
Dunn's normal policy is to select the Napa Cabernet Sauvignon from his barrels right before bottling. Hence what I tasted was a trial blend of this wine. This year produced extremely small crops characterized by extremely cool growing seasons as well as unusually late harvests. Dunn dropped 30% of the crop in order to guarantee ripeness in his vineyard. There is no astringent tannin or vegetal characteristic to be found in this full-bodied, powerful Cabernet Sauvignon.