1994 Opus One Napa Valley Bordeaux Blend
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
This is an impressive effort from Opus One. The wine, a blend of 95% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc, 2% Merlot, and 1% Malbec, possesses a dark ruby/purple color, followed by a generous, complex nose of lead pencil, toasty oak, violets, and black currants. In the mouth, there is a beautiful texture, soft, generous, low acid, full-bodied richness, and a stunningly proportioned, rich, intense finish. The influence of 18 months in new French oak casks gives the wine a subtle oaky note in addition to giving it excellent delineation. Because of the wine's softness and generosity, it can be drunk now as well as over the next 18-20 years.
The 1994 Opus One is a beautiful, symmetrical wine endowed with stunning balance and pure class. Silky, nuanced and delineated, the 1994 takes shape nicely in the glass. Unfortunately, this is another vintage affected by brett, but at the same time, there are plenty of positive attributes that compensate to some degree. Still, it is quite obvious the 1994 could have – and should have – been a more important wine, perhaps even more than that. The blend is 93% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Cabernet Franc, 2% Merlot and 1% Malbec.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Dark ruby-red. Exotic, vibrant aromas of cherry, redcurrant, tobacco, mint, cigar ash and white pepper. Thick, supple and very concentrated; really uncanny creamy sweetness and texture in the middle palate. Intriguing note of sarsaparilla. Substantial but utterly suave tannins are thoroughly buffered by the wine extract. Shows some of the sauvage qualities of past vintages of this wine, but here the fresh red fruit flavors are even fresher and more concentrated than usual.
A subtle, elegant, understated style, very Bordeaux-like in its range of flavors, with rich currant, anise and a hot brick wall of earthiness. The tannins are still big and chewy, but there's a lot of complexity, depth and persistence to the flavors.
Opus One was founded as a joint venture between Château Mouton Rothschild's Baron Philippe de Rothschild and Robert Mondavi, and in 1984 released its first vintage, the 1979. This luxury Bordeaux-style blend has since become an international success and a landmark winery in the Napa Valley.