Harlan Estate Red 2012
|Region||California, Napa Valley, Oakville|
Perhaps Robert Parker has said it best: "Harlan Estate might be the single most profound red wine made not just in California, but in the world."
Harlan Estate, owned by Bill Harlan, is located in the western hills of Oakville. Harlan is known for its commitment to creating a wine that is a California "First Growth," on par with those of the old world. The entire estate consists of 240 acres, including a homestead and plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Consulting oenologist Michel Rolland and winemaker Bob Levy lead the production of Harlan's wines, producing two Bordeaux-style blends: Harlan Estate's namesake proprietary red and "The Maiden." These wines have been received to great acclaim by reviewers and collectors alike, commanding high prices and a competitive waiting list. Both wines are complex, full-bodied and have the ability to age for decades. With an opulent style, rich with dense fruit and elements of black currant, spice, and minerals, Harlan is both graceful and elegant, ranking it among the top tier of California Cabernet producers.
The 2012 Harlan Estate is reminiscent of their 2002. Probably a candidate for perfection with another 4-5 years of bottle age, the wine is inky plum/purple to the rim and offers a gorgeous nose of scorched earth, blackberry and cassis, forest floor, and a floral, lavender-like component followed by deep, opulent, majestic flavors that caress the palate with high but sweet tannin. This is relatively evolved, and supple and voluptuous for a young Harlan estate - hence the comparison with their compelling 2002. This wine can be drunk in several years and is likely another candidate for 30-50 years of cellaring.
This shows incredible lavender aromas with Provencal undertones of violets, dark fruits such as blueberry and blackberry, and some walnut. Full body plus ultra fine tannins that build on the finish. It really comes on with a rolling tannin structure. Tightly wound. A muscular and elegant wine with superb tone. A fresh and bright Harlan. This wine has levity, as the winemaker likes to say. Try in 2020.
Dusty, loamy tannins provide the outline, with a crushed rock—laced mix of dried berry, sage and cedary oak...ends elegantly, with spice and firm tannins.