(From NV Vintage) "Very concentrated, with a formidable core of black currant and blackberry fruit. Bone dry but with that subtle impression of sweetness that comes from ripe Cabernet. Dried mushroom tones contribute an appetizing, savory component and there's also a trace of black licorice. The tannins are fine-grained and supple, with an impression of chewiness fleshing out the aftertaste. The vivid flavors of the finish suggest a terrific future." - Wine.com
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Wine & Spirits(From 2003 Vintage) The 1998 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa (a composite blend) is highly-extracted, but very light. It obviously reflects the challenges presented by this vintage. Dry tannin in the finish might turn out to be a cause for concern, but there is still plenty of cassis fruit in this medium to full-bodied Cabernet, but it is more compressed than usual. Dunn will undoubtedly build more flesh and fruit into it before bottling, but we will have to wait another year to find out. If Godzilla drank California Cabernet Sauvignon, would there be any doubt as to what choice it would be?
Robert Parker(From 2002 Vintage) "The 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain exhibits an inky/blue/purple color along with a sweet perfume of pure blackberries, meat, new saddle leather, and flowers. From an unusually ripe harvest, this sweet, rich, fleshy offering displays more accessibility than many Howell Mountain vintages. Randy Dunn said it was important to drop crop, and he eliminated 40% of the fruit from the vines in both 2002 and 2001. The long, concentrated 2002 may not be the biggest Howell Mountain cuvee, but it wi...
Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wines(From 2002 Vintage) From its very deep, currant-and-sweet-spice aromas to its keenly defined and concentrated varietal flavors, this compelling young effort is wonderfully rich without being flamboyant or flashy or beholden to runaway ripeness and oak. It is uncommonly well tailored for the big wine that it is, and it shows fine fruity length even while finishing with considerable tannins. It is far from its best and, given the capability for lengthy aging shown by Dunn Cabernets over the years, we feel safe in sett...
Wine Advocate(From 2002 Vintage) Rating: (91-94) - As reviewed in Wine Advocate # 150 on Dec-03
Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wines(From 2000 Vintage) We have been champions of Randy Dunn's dense and sinewy Cabernets for many years now, and this latest, loosely defined and seemingly underfilled wine comes as a genuine surprise. Its offbeat aromas smack as much of twigs and green olives as of well-ripened fruit, and its taut, tannin-framed flavors carry an echo of greenness as well. It is possible that aging will help it fill out, but we cannot find the sort of fruit at its heart to win it a place in our cellars.