The Harlan Estate 1994 is a wine of extraordinary depth and complexity. Displaying a very dark, nearly opaque color and remarkable viscosity, it captivates the senses from the moment it is poured. Initially closed, it gradually reveals its allure with a slightly minty, fresh, and bright character on the nose. Earthy and mineral notes intertwine with distinctive forest floor aromas, creating a multi-layered bouquet. On the palate, this wine exhibits a dense and concentrated profile. Abundant flavors of black currant, minerals, smoked herbs, and blackberry take center stage, followed by nuances of cedar, coffee, and vanilla. The interplay of higher acidity and a lower pH profile contributes to a sense of balance and energy, elevating the overall experience. The 1994 vintage is rightfully regarded as one of California's greatest, and the 1994 Harlan Estate exemplifies the magnificence of this year. It showcases a very classic style with meticulous attention to detail and a vibrant energy that promises continued evolution over the next 25-30 years. The 1994 Harlan Estate is a true testament to the exceptional quality of this renowned vineyard.
Robert Parker - 100 Points
"What can I say about the 1994? I have tasted the wine for three consecutive years, and each time it satisfied all of my requirements for perfection. The opaque purple color is followed by spectacular aromatics that soar from the glass, offering up celestial levels of black currants, minerals, smoked herbs, cedar wood, coffee, and pain grille. In the mouth, this seamless legend reveals full body, and exquisite layers of phenomenally pure and rich fruit, followed by a 40+ second finish. While accessible, the 1994 begs for another 5-7 years of cellaring. It should easily last for 30+ years. Every possible jagged edge - acidity, alcohol, tannin, and wood - is brilliantly intertwined in what seems like a diaphanous format. What is so extraordinary about this large-scaled wine, with its dazzling display of aromatics and prodigious flavors and depth, is that it offers no hint of heaviness or coarseness. Harlan's 1994 comes close to immortality in the glass. Much of this wine will be sold to the winery's mailing list customers. If you miss out on the 1994, try and get on the waiting list for future vintages. While perfect wines are few and far between, history has taught me that wineries with such lofty aspirations as Harlan Estate will continue to push the envelop of quality."
Antonio Galloni - 96 Points
"Slightly more vibrant saturated ruby-red color. Even deeper and more nuanced aromas of liqueur-like blackcurrant, black olive, violet, minerals, brown spices and floral perfume. In contrast to the (relatively) more laid-back '95, this is almost painfully sweet on entry, with huge extract giving it a three-dimensional texture. More powerfully structured than the '95, but as large as it is, it retains near-perfect balance. Explosive finishing fruit covers the rich, sweet tannins."