Harlan Estate 1999
Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
Medium depth of color, just a hint of mahogany at the edge. still showing fresh aromas, with dominant notes of red currant, espresso, minerals, blueberry, tobacco, licorice, and a touch of chocolate mint. A lovely, elegant wine, it shows remarkable purity, density, and depth of concentration and has a very unctuous texture and juicy sweet tannins in the finish.
Wine Enthusiast - "An exceptional wine. Fragrant, with plenty of plum, black cherry, cedar and spice aromas. On the palate, it’s silky smooth, elegant and fresh, yet packed with complex layers of blackberry, cassis, chocolate, coffee, anise, sage, thyme and cherry flavors. Marked by an exquisite textural elegance and harmonious balance, it displays a fine blend of firm, supple tannins and appropriate acidty that support great length on the finish."
International Wine Cellar - "Good deep red-ruby. Sexy aromas of wild plum, violet, graphite and minerals, with captivating saline and baked bread nuances. Sweet on entry, then wonderfully bright and gripping in the middle palate, displaying very ripe plum and currant flavors complicated by wild herbs and a whiff of game. This boasts a lovely combination of sweetness of fruit and bracing acid spine. Finishes juicy and extremely long, with outstanding lift. Our first bottle was corked, so this replacement was poured without being decanted, and it was a treat watching it evolve with air.Rating: 96+"
Wine Spectator - "Taut and slow to unfold, with green and black olive, savory herb and mocha flavors, unfolding with layers of currant, plum, espresso bean and mineral, followed by an impressive finish. From a cool year.--Non-blind Harlan retrospective (2010). Drink now through 2022. 1,700 cases made."
The Wine Advocate - "Very deep garnet-black colour going brick at the rim. Complex, maturing nose with notes of warm blackberry, game, dried plums, moss, white pepper, Provence herbs and a whiff of iron ore. The palate reveals a concentrated, medium to full bodied wine balanced by medium acidity and a medium to firm level of velvety tannins. Very long finish departing with lingering savoury and mineral flavours. Drink now to 2018. Tasted November 2008."
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Harlan Estate Winery
For over two decades, Harlan Estate has been committed to creating a California "first growth" wine estate. Founded in 1984, Harlan Estate is set in the western hills of Oakville, rising above the fabled Napa Valley benchlands. Carved from the raw land and built for generations, the estate is over 240 acres of natural spendor, 15% of which are under vine, planted to the classic varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. View all Harlan Estate Wines
About Napa ValleyView a map of Napa Valley wineries
It's hard not to think of Napa Valley when thinking of California wines. The region is, after all, the one that brought world recognition to California wine making. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux Blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Notable FactsWithin the Napa Valley lie smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two is St.-Helena and finally, just grated an AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap and Mount Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.