2023 - 2053
Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2017 Harlan Estate needs a little coaxing to reveal captivating iron ore, red currant jelly, cloves and crushed rocks scents with a core of warm cassis, Black Forest cake and boysenberries plus a waft of pencil lead. Medium to full-bodied, it has a firm, grainy texture with a lively backbone and loads of earthy layers, long and mineral laced. This should be one of the longer-lived wines coming out of the 2017 vintage.
"2018 had a certain sense of ease to it," Bill Harlan said as we tasted the barrel sample of the next iteration of this iconic label. "The pace was wonderful." "Mother nature was allowing us an extended runway," winemaker Cory Empting agreed. "We just started picking and couldn’t stop." As a reminder, Harlan Estate is bottled later than most other Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignons. While a lot of the Napa 2018s were bottled in and around July 2020, Harlan will not be bottled until late February or early March 2021. This 2018 is looking incredibly youthful and indeed reticent, as are many 2018s, but it bears all the grace and sophistication of a wine nearing completion, promising to be an elegant, perfumed and perhaps even "perfect" expression of this very special piece of Napa turf.