Dominus Napa Valley Red 2018
|Region||California, Napa Valley|
The flagship 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon checks in as 89% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot brought up in 40% new French oak. With an essence of Cabernet like character in its darker currants, green tobacco, cedar, graphite, and floral aromas and flavors, this gorgeous wine is full-bodied and has bright yet integrated acidity, polished tannins, and a great, great finish. It's just gorgeously put together and a magical, flawless wine. It's going to take a decade to hit maturity but will evolve for 40-50 years in cold cellars. It is as good as it gets in classic, age-worthy Cabernet Sauvignon!
Very deep garnet-purple colored, the 2018 Dominus slowly emerges from the glass with profound notes of blackcurrant cordial, ripe black plums, boysenberries and Black Forest cake with hints of violets, star anise, cracked black pepper, raspberry leaves and pencil lead, plus a touch of garrigue. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers impactful black fruit layers, creating a beguiling sense of richness that is beautifully countered by invigorating freshness and great poise, framed by super ripe, plush tannins and beautiful tension, finishing on a lingering fragrant earth note and, finally, lots of mineral sparks. For all that it is at the moment, one cannot help but feel that this 2018 is holding something back. Give it a good five years in bottle, at least, and then get set for what I suspect will be a mind-blowing transformation over the next 30 years+.
This is tightly packed, with sleek, pure, driven notes of cassis, plum reduction and blackberry puree allied to an iron spine, while subtle alder, juniper, sweet bay leaf and tobacco notes peek in throughout. Very fine-grained, but impressively sturdy in feel, with a long, lingering note of iron piercing the finish. For the cellar. Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Best from 2024 through 2040.
The 2018 Dominus is wild and exotic from the first taste. Lifted aromatics make a strong opening impression. There is something exuberant about the 2018 that is hard to describe. The 2018 is not a huge Dominus, nor is it massively structured, but the intensity of the flavors is remarkable just the same. Dark raspberry, spice, leather and cedar are some of the many notes that open over time.