Hoop Dreams

Dark ruby, no edge–and staining.  A bright, brilliant youthful fruit blows off early, leaving effusive alcohol, German chocolate cake rife with black walnuts and dense sugary fruit rising out of it.  Root beer syrup and green firewood bring mild sweetbrier and rich earth by way of private jet and limo–no luxury was spared here.

For celebrity-wines, these are remarkably well made.  This is the third vintage of Yao Ming’s Cab I have had and to be honest, I find very little vintage-differences between them–instead finding a consistent rich opulent fruit-thread throughout all.  I had heard rumors of the 2012 being flabbier than the the 2013, and assumed so myself–based on personal experience with many other wines.  But no, and if it is: imperceptibly so–I really have a hard time finding flaws with these wines.

In the mouth, teeth-coating volatility blend all that concentrated fruit jam into massive green early-tannin, acid and a touch of alcohol burn.  Alcohol keeps popping up in this and I am going to guess 14-8.  Dense and oily, fruit and texture you literally need to chew through, til finally the lovely bitter crescendo of tannin leaves you in pleasant memories.  I’ve been somewhat critical of Napa 2012’s and this HAS to be one of my favorites from that vintage.  It feels like a souped-up 2011.

2012 YAO MING Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 14.7



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