Realm The Absurd 2017
|Region||California, Napa Valley|
Winemaker Benoit Touquette, owner Scott Becker and consultant Michel Rolland had a debate about whether to make a 2017 The Absurd—the estate's über-blend of the best elements from that vintage. In the end, they made just two barrels. As per usual, they do not declare what the grape varieties or vineyards are that compose this blend. Deep garnet-purple colored, it needs a little swirling to coax out notions of ripe, juicy blackcurrants, black plums and warm blueberries, plus hints of licorice, unsmoked cigars and tilled black soil. Full-bodied, the palate has a solid structure of firm, finely-grained tannins and compelling freshness supporting the tightly wound, earthy layers, finishing long with loads of persistent, soft-spoken nuances. A little restrained and still incredibly youthful, it will need a good 3-5 years in bottle to begin to unfurl and should cellar for at least 30 years after that.
The flagship from this reference point estate, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Absurd is a tiny selection from the top lots in the cellar. While 2017 was a challenging vintage for Napa, don't mistake thinking that no great wines were made, and this 2017 is a great example of the best out there. It boasts a deep purple/plum color as well as a complex, almost Bordeaux-like bouquet of blackcurrants, scorched earth, lead pencil, chocolate, tobacco, and gravelly earth. Haut-Brion-like aromatically, this full-bodied beauty is concentrated, has a great mid-palate, building yet silky tannins, and a great finish. As with most great 2017s, it plays in the more backward, elegant end of the spectrum, yet this is flawlessly balanced and an extraordinary wine..