1999 Dunn Howell Mountain Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
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. (Not released yet)
*Top 100 Wines of 2002* 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.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Ruby-red. Cassis, spice and a suggestion of bandaid on the nose. Juicy and penetrating but austere, with assertive blackcurrant and meat flavors. Densely packed and quite backward, showing tougher tannins today than the Napa bottling. Finish exudes a hint of the barnyard.
One of the last of the great and ageable '99s. Solid structure with noticeable tannins, this offering has the balance to develop for decades. Dunn has the track record to prove it, from lesser vintages (the '83 comes to mind) to this fabulous '99.