The following tasting note shows the combined comments of the tasting panel organised for Club Oenologique at Harlan Estate on 11 March 2020. Present: Adam Lechmere, Bill Harlan, Will Harlan, estate directer Don Weaver, collector Jim Walker, Harlan educator Kelli White, director of winegrowing Bob Levy, Jamie Ritchie of Sotheby’s fine wine, Elaine Chukan Brown (notes can be found on jancisrobinson.com), winemaker Cory Empting, associate director François Vignaud
Bordeaux blend of average 75% Cabernet Sauvignon plus varying proportions of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
Adam Lechmere – Really lovely nose and evolving just as you’d expect, mint and bramble, blackberry jam on the palate, soft tannins with edge, perfume carries through on the mid palate to the end, then the tannins strengthen and grip and you fear they are dry. The finish is complex and long, and evolved.
Bob Levy – notes of brett on top (wet straw-like more than horse/barnyard), celery & other savory, herbal notes, non-distinct; decent concentration, round & juicy, slightly angular tannins
Cory Empting – bloody, meaty, maple syrup; aromatics are slightly more evolved; amazing length & power that moves through the wine, lending softness to the tannins
Don Weaver – very expressive black cherry, cassis and bramble; powerful, highly detailed; tannins stacked up, long finish, slightly dry at the end; a complete wine
François Vignaud – soft herbal tone with cola plant, clove, spice, fresh character, floral; balanced palate, growing from start to finish, going through layers; crescendo of flavors, from fresh fruit and tertiary aromas to the frame of tannins
Bill Harlan – solid nose & mouthfeel, good body, bright, good energy
Jamie Ritchie – Very seamless, integrated bouquet of cherry, tea and tar. Refined, elegant and seamless, like being with an old friend. Sweet, savory, spicy and dry with a long lingering finish of tea, tar, roses, coffee and mint. Drink now.
Jim Walker – quiet nose, silky with characteristic flavor profile; not the fruit bomb I remember but still fruity
Kelli White – heady, perfumed nose of dried roses, Worcestershire, soy, apple skin, smoked meats; similar to 1996 but with more weight and concentration; more bass notes too; a bit on the brooding side as the tannins are still quite powerful; gorgeous
Will Harlan – nose is warmer, rounder; oak is still perceptible, almost bourbon-y; palate is balanced but not completely harmonious; very pleasurable nonetheless; good quality of tannin
- Drinking Window
- 2020 - 2027
- Wine Style
- Napa Valley AVA
- Bottle size
- Grape Varieties