The wine was called napamedoc until 1982 when it was named Opus One. The winery was founded as a joint venture between Baron Philippe de Rothschild of Château Mouton Rothschild and Robert Mondavi to create a single Bordeaux style blend based upon Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. It is located across State Route 29 from the Robert Mondavi Winery. The creation of this winery venture in 1980 was big news in the wine industry; de Rothschild's involvement added an air of respectability to the burgeoning Napa wine region. The first vintage, 1979 was released in 1984 at the same time as the 1980 vintage.
An expression of time and place
The essence of time is expressed in Opus One by the character of each vintage. Place, often defined as terroir, represents the geography, the climate and the essential human element which is captured in the wine’s balance between power and finesse, structure and texture.
Napa Valley 2006
A very good Opus with plenty of forward cherries and black raspberries as well as rich notes of spiced oak that give a nougat or crunchy vanilla granola sweetness to the finish. The vintage was not Opus One’s best, but the wine is impeccably crafted, and shows its usual fine tannic structure.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Napa Valley 2008
Aromas of rose petals, cassis and black cherry in the 2008 combine with notes of marzipan and sandalwood. A satin texture enrobes the wine's smooth, round tannins, its bright acidity supporting a juicy and elegant mouthfeel. This precocious and remarkable wine offers a long finish, with traces of clove and dark chocolate.
Vinous Antonio Galloni
Napa Valley 2011
The 2011 Opus One comes across as quite powerful and intense. Raspberry jam, rose petals, savory herbs and mint, all come together beautifully in the glass. This is a very strong showing, especially within the context of the year. The lithe, mid-weight, savory style is at times more Old World than New, yet all the elements are in the right place.