1999 Opus One Napa Valley Proprietary Red
An exquisite, complex, stylish wine, wearing a cloak of earthy, leathery tannins around flavors of mineral, currant, earth and blackberry. Gains intensity and shows its depth and concentration on the finish, which is long and detailed.
Crushed flowers, sweet tobacco, dried cherries and incense are some of the notes that take shape as the 1999 Opus One emerges from the glass. This is a decidedly mid-weight Opus One that should be enjoyed over the next few years. The 1999 doesn't have the opulence of the 1997 nor the energy of the 1998, rather it is a wine built on texture and balance, two highly admirable qualities, to say the least. In 1999 Opus One is 84% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 3% Malbec and 1% Petit Verdot.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Deep red-ruby. Sappy nose combines currant, smoked meat, tobacco and exotic spices. Rich, sweet and tactile, with complex, tangy flavors of crystallized blackcurrant, caraway seed and smoked meat. Unlike most Bordeaux blends from California, this shows little greenness or gratuitous oak and the finish builds impressively. A very suave wine that finishes with fine, spreading tannins.
Spring rains reduced berry set. Indian summer much valued for late ripening. Cabernet Sauvignon 84%, Cabernet Franc 5%, Merlot 7%, Malbec 3%, Petit Verdot 1%. Skin contact 40 days, 17 months in new French oak. Quite purple and deep. Still quite simple on the nose. Quite tough and intense and reined in. Something quite sweet about this. Masses of acidity. Some coffee. Big, bold, and unevolved, but not a single corner or join in evidence. Smoothness itself. 18/20 points.