Heitz Cellars, Napa Valley, Trailside Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon 1991

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By C4

93 points John Gilman

Along with the brilliant 1993 vintage, the 1991 Trailside is my favorite example of this bottling that I have yet tasted from Heitz Wine Cellars. The nose on the ’91 is stunning, as it offers up a wonderfully complex mix of red and black cherries, blood orange, a nice touch of Asian spices, new leather, cigar smoke, laurel, complex soil tones and spicy wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and tangy, with excellent focus and balance, ripe, beautifully-integrated tannins, lovely purity and excellent length and grip on the tangy and multi-layered finish. This is a great bottle of Napa cabernet in the making and I would love to see how this stacks up alongside of the Martha’s Vineyard and Bella Oaks bottlings from 1991. Clearly this would have placed up near the very top of my horizontal tasting of the 1991 Cabernets that I reported on last year. I would try to give it close to a decade more bottle age, as it is still decidedly more primary in its profile than the outstanding 1993 and really deserves more cellaring. 93+ (5/2011)

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