(From 2005 Vintage) In 2005, weather, budbreak and set were ideal, allowing us to harvest quality grapes and to reduce intervention in the cellar. Dominus 2005 is dark red, almost deep crimson in color. The nose is dense and compact, filled with dark berries, blond tobacco, black cherries and cacao. The entry is both powerful and supple, spherical in quality. Perfectly ripe, the enveloped tannins are firm, rounded and elegant. Black fruit and licorice linger throughout the evolution in mouth, well-balanced and harmonious. A superb vintage. The 2005 blend consists of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc, and 3% Petit Verdot. No Merlot was used in the blend this year. This wine clearly has tremendous aging potential. We recommend decanting the wine prior to serving, to allow it to develop its full potential. This is especially important when serving young Dominus wines.
(From 2011 Vintage) The 2011 vintage displays fresh almond, wild strawberry and cassis. The wine has delicate notes of smooth caramel. Polished tannins, dark berries, cocoa and sage accompany a long elegant finish. The 2011 vintage is composed of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Petit Verdot, and 5% Cabernet Franc. We recommend decanting the wine prior to serving, to allow it to develop its full potential. This is especially important when serving young Dominus wines.
Connoisseurs' Guide to California WinesCould be 80 points. Could be 90 points. Yes, we do not usually give split scores to wine, and perhaps we should simply let the lower score stand, but there is fruit and richness aplenty here. And, if you have another two decades to wait and a fair bit of optimism, you might want to take the chance that this wine's virtues will someday outshine both its ridiculously abrasive tannins and the earthy, old leathery tones that have been in control over its first two decades. Not previously reviewed.