The 2005 vintage of our left bank style Cariad blend makes a formidable comparison to a true Bordeaux first growth. In a cooler vintage such as 2005, we truly experienced weather more comparable to that in Bordeaux, and I think that is reflected in the freshness and depth of this wine. The gravelly, fresh leather and mineral aromatics mimic those in one of my favorite wines of Pauillac, Chateau Latour. The Cariad boasts more black fruit notes of sweet black cherries, black licorice, floral and honeysuckle, yet it also flirts with an elusive savory character you find in asian plum sauce and soy sauce. This vintage of Cariad really showcases the balance between richness and elegance that you can achieve through careful winemaking and a "grand cru" type vineyard site. The fantastic texture of the wine is built mostly around its backbone, the 20 year old Cabernet vines at Madrona ranch. They portray deliciously unctuous tannin, with layers on layers of glycerol. The wine is remarkably plush and soft at this moment, yet it is an undeniably serious wine. The 2005 Cariad will improve with 3 to 5 years of cellar age, and will drink well for two to three decades
"Performing even better than when I originally tasted it (scored 96+ at that time), the 2005 is composed of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc and 9% Petit Verdot. The first vintage where Allison Tauziet had complete control after Mark Aubert left to pursue his own wine venture, the 2005 continues to grow in stature and complexity. It exhibits an opaque purple color, a youthful style (it tastes like a 2-3 year old wine) and abundant notes of black fruits, acacia flowers, espresso, white chocolate, crushed rock and licorice. Full-bodied and velvety textured with fabulous concentration, high but sweet tannin and a 60+ second finish, it needs 4-5 more years of cellaring and should age effortlessly over the following 25-30 years."
The Wine Advocate
"Ripe and intense, with firm, minerally tannins that have a dry, dusty edge wrapped about the earthy dried currant and black cherry fruit that's deep and concentrated, ending with a long, persistent finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Best from 2010 through 2017. 900 cases made."
"Good deep ruby-red. Knockout nose combines dark berries, graphite, cedar and flowers. The palate offers uncanny clarity and depth of flavor, combining elegance and density in the way of a great grand cru site. Wonderful energy here, as well as inner-palate floral lift. A great vintage for Harlan Estate, with nothing overdone about it. Incidentally, I had the opportunity to taste every vintage of Harlan Estate in an extraordinary vertical tasting on this visit, and this 2007 was as strong as any wine to date from outstanding property estate."
International Wine Cellar