Winemaker Daniel Daou has cultivated deep connections with families of growers for numerous vintages, allowing him to maintain absolute quality and consistency. The 2020 growing season began on a dry note, followed by much-needed rain in April that replenished the soils and set the stage for healthy canopy growth. Conditions through midsummer remained mild and steady, with the exception of a rare August thunderstorm. The wines of 2020 are marked by voluptuous mouthfeel with considerable flesh and power.
The 2020 Pessimist presents intense aromas of blueberry, cherry, plum and strawberry with undercurrents of lavender and kirsch. The nose evolves with layers of warm leather, truffle, pipe tobacco, black pepper and allspice. Rich and weighty on the palate, this wine delivers a no-holds- barred generosity of bold fruit flavors—boysenberry, blackberry, cassis and plum, underlain by notes of rhubarb, pomegranate and damp forest floor. Subtle hints of black olives, mushroom and tamarind spice concisely complement the balanced and well-rounded flavor profile. A persistent, elegant finish lingers with red cherry and cranberry tones highlighted by hints of dark chocolate.
Robert Parker – 92 points
Jeb Dunnuck – 92 points