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WTN: 2 from Dunn

geo t.

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1996 Dunn Vineyards Napa Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% alc.: Dunn's style of Cabernet Sauvignon is a little hard to describe, because it doesn't fit neatly into any of the usual pigeon holes; it's not well oaked (au contraire, any oak comes off as neutral, at best) and the fruit is certainly not "bright" (austere might be a better descriptor, although the wines do tend to be big), yet they don't really resemble Bordeaux that much either. Tom Natoci opened this dark garnet colored beast for us, and the best characterization I can up with for it is black currant and old wood, deep, dark and dirty, and those are positive impressions. Putnam Weekley ruminated upon it thus: "It smells like cabernet; cold, northern pine forest; herbal, old and grapey; it asks the question, 'What is Napa cab?!'" He and Tom both find it to be "like meat." Despite at least 10 years worth of tannins, it opens quickly and beautifully in the glass, becoming more harmonious by the minute. Tom and Putnam are both big fans of that "dirty Dunn" style, and it's easy to understand why, based on this and a '97 that we all tried about 6 months back (sorry, no notes taken, but the wine was quite similar to this, and remarkably approachable coming from a winery with the reputation for producing massively tannic cabernet). Despite the insistence of my better half that it was time to leave, I had to linger an extra twenty minutes or so, because this one is just too good to slug down.

1993 Dunn Vineyards Napa Petite Sirah Howell Mountain, 13.6% alc.: Like the cabernet noted above, there's nothing sweet or bright about the fruit in this wine; if there were an old French Petite Sirah, it might taste like this. Inky opaque, fading to pink at the rim, and very dry, bordering on rustic, with black currant - older barrel character and overtones of cedar that become accentuated with air. Deep, dark and still pretty tight, this has the structure to age for years, and it needs the time, so no reason to open one any time soon, unless of course, you want to. };^)>

- from Mixed Bag

Reporting from Day-twah,

geo t.

George Heritier aka geo t.

The Gang of Pour

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