A real showy wine with intoxicating perfume on the nose. Plush mouth feel, delicate and finessed with good concentration of red fruits and currant. Has a lower intensity finish, with well resolved tannins, and there's decent acidity holding this together. In a good place right now. Very well balanced wine, bridging the gap between old and new Napa very nicely. 93 points.
This is a perfect wine.
External Reviews for Dominus Estate
Dominus is a large vineyard, and they have the ability to make a strict selection. The 2002 Dominus gets my nod as the greatest example of this cuvee since the 1991 and 1994. There are 4,500 cases of this 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Cabernet Franc, 4% Petit Verdot, and 3% Merlot blend fashioned from minuscule yields ranging from 1.8 to 2.8 tons of fruit per acre. Christian Moueix told me that the phenolic material was higher analytically in 2002, as were the acids, which surprised everyone. The deep, saturated purple-colored 2002 boasts an extraordinary perfume of roasted coffee intermixed with black currants, cherries, cocoa, cedar, cigar smoke, and new saddle leather. A classic, full-bodied palate possesses great structure, tremendous depth, loads of tannin, and a multilayered, concentrated yet elegant finish. It is difficult to predict when this beauty will plateau in terms of maturity. My best guess is it needs 3-5 years of bottle age, and should last for 25 years.
Good full ruby-red. Tightly wound nose hints at cassis, minerals, licorice and menthol. Then surprisingly dense and rich on entry, with complex flavors of smoky black fruits, licorice and dark chocolate. Has the sweetness and fat to carry its substantial building tannins. Large-scaled and fat but without the grip of the 2001. This is a more upfront wine, while the 2001 is leaner on entry, then expands and lingers on the back half.
Saturated ruby-red. Ripe, nuanced nose combines black raspberry, currant, black plum, menthol, mocha and laurel. Chewy and superbly concentrated, with vibrant, sharply delineated flavors of red- and blackcurrant, tobacco, tar, chocolate, minerals and licorice. Powerful and juicy, with layers of flavor and terrific verve despite its obviously low acidity. The very broad tannins reach the front teeth. Promises to be a superb vintage for Dominus, and should also offer terrific early charm.
Good ruby-red. Superripe aromas of plum, cherry, licorice, mocha, smoke and minerals. At once sweet and gripping, with very intense, nuanced flavors of cherry, plum, currant, tobacco, minerals and currant leaf. Despite the very high pH of 4.01, this shows no shortage of energy in the mouth. A muscular, firmly tannic, serious wine for aging. (A second sample that had been decanted for four hours prior to my visit was sweeter and more seamless, but still showed solid tannic spine.)
The 2003 Dominus has turned out even better than I thought from barrel. There are 4,800 cases of this 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot blend. A big, sweet nose of roasted coffee, Provencal herbs, black currants, cherry jam, plums, allspice, and forest floor is followed by a spicy, rich, full-bodied, fragrant, intense wine. The tannins are sweet, but noticeable in this beautifully complex, strikingly aromatic 2003. It has much more similarity to a great Bordeaux than anything from Napa Valley. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2025.
The 2008 Dominus may eclipse the 2007, but it may just be a matter of style. The 2007 Dominus, the quintessential model of haute couture, is pure elegance exhibiting a seamless integration of wood, tannin, alcohol and acidity as well as a complex bouquet of cedar, new saddle leather, sweet kirsch, black currant and plum fruit and a notion of licorice. Both the 2007 and 2008 Dominus should drink well for 25-30 years.
A short crop of concentrated berries produced this grand vintage of Dominus, one that will need long aging to show its best. Decant it if you open the bottle now, allowing the initial cabernet franc scent of green herbs to integrate andmdash; Josiah Baldivino of Michael Mina in San Francisco described it as andldquo;adding a fine detail, like a pocket square in a suit.andrdquo; Air brings out the full stature of the wine, its black cherry richness, violet scents and silken texture. For provencal lamb.