2010 Lail Vineyards "J. Daniel Cuvée" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
Lail's 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon John Daniel Cuvée bursts from the glass with explosive fruit, firm tannins and deeply pitched spice notes. This is another wine endowed with gorgeous balance and tons of personality, but it needs time to settle down. Blueberry jam, cloves, mint and licorice are some of the nuances that flesh out on a rich, saline-infused finish supported by firm, insistent tannins. With time in the glass, the 2010 gets better and better. The 2010 was made from a blend of fruit from Heimark and Vine Hill Ranch. The wine spent 19 months in French oak barrels, 78% new.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The flagship wine, the 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon J. Daniel Cuvee is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from two sources, 73% from the Dutch Henry Canyon area in Calistoga and 27% from Vine Hill Ranch in Oakville. This wine spent 19 months in three-fourths new French oak. A sensational effort, it reveals copious notes of lead pencil shavings, blackberries, mulberries, black currants, licorice and charcoal. This beautifully crafted, full-bodied Cabernet possesses impressive delineation and a long finish with moderate tannin as well as decent acidity for vibrancy. Approachable now, it should continue to drink well for at least a quarter of a century. (RP)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Good full medium ruby. Expressive, slightly high-toned aromas of blueberry, licorice pastille, mocha, coffee, black olive, minerals and crushed rock. Youthfully tight but densely packed and serious, with a piquant vein of peppery acidity enlivening the concentrated flavors of currant, minerals and spices. Finishes with outstanding rising length and a firm spine of acids and harmonious tannins. Lay this one down. I significantly underrated this wine from barrel a year ago, when it came across as greener.
An altogether bigger and brawnier wine that runs headlong to ripeness while giving less attention to keen Cabernet fruit, this bottling gets by on richness more than on precision and fights with imposing astringency that precludes near-term enjoyment. It is a wine of raw strength rather than one of nuance, and its stripes may not change even after the prolonged aging that its gritty tannins demand.
Trim and spicy, offering a graceful mix of dried currant, dark berry, cedar, tobacco leaf, dried herb and crushed rock. Bordeaux-like in restraint and detail. Best from 2014 through 2024. (Web-2013)