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Professional Ratings: 96 The Wine Advocate, 96 James Suckling, 94 Wine Spectator, 93 International Wine Cellar, 93 Wine & Spirits
Region: St. Estephe, Bordeaux, France
Varietal: Bordeaux Red Blends
Other Info: Collectible Wines
Style: Big & Bold
Alcohol By Volume: 13%
Item no. 96219
The 1996 vintage of this wine was ranked #8 on the Wine Spectator's Top 10 Wines of 1999
Color: Dense, deep, almost blackThe nose is still closed: black fruits, spices, chocolate.Complex palate, long, rich, powerful, cherry, cocoa, licorice, tobacco brown, pruneThis is a very big wine, full and very structured, with nice length, the tannins are very robust, with great aging potential.
In 2005, a very serious drought year stressed most vineyards in Bordeaux, which are all dry-farmed. The volume of rainfall was less than half the average of the previous 30 years. The clay subsoils at Montrose have always played a major role in not only dry years, but also in extremely hot ones, such as 2003, as they retain more moisture. The grapes were harvested between September 23 and October 9. This is a very powerful, full-bodied wine that is quite tannic, but the tannins are relatively velvety. The wine is rich, complex, majestic, multi-dimensional and also avoids any of the austerity that some 2005s possess. It has done quite well in its bottle evolution and should turn out to be a great Montrose, capable of lasting 30 to 50 years.
Loads of spice, berry, meat, cloves and chocolate on the nose. Full body with soft, silky tannins and lots of rich fruit. Still chewy. This is just starting to open now. It was decanted three hours in advance in this tasting. I would still leave it.
Black licorice and blackberry aromas, with hints of mineral, lead to a full-bodied palate. Very chewy, with loads of tannins, yet this follows through with beautifully ripe fruit, mineral and mint. Fascinating. Best after 2012.
Good bright ruby-red. Very ripe aromas of plum, flint and nutty oak. Large-scaled, rich and explosive, offering impressive volume and a sensation of power. The ripeness here verges on syrupy and this lush, round wine may well need a decade to lose some of its baby fat and assume its adult shape. The big, ripe tannins coat the teeth.
This is so big it is blinding, a storm of mineral tannin and plum-skin extract. The volume is turned up high, and even as the tannic noise factor begins to diminish with days of air, the wine is still closed tight. The comportment of its power shows this to be a wine from a great terroir; the property, in fact, has some parallels to Latour, with its similarly shaped gravel promontory above the Gironde. Montrose consistently grows one of the staunchest, long-lived wines of the Médoc and though accommodations have been made in recent years to soften it, the tannic index in February 2006 read at 82, a force to reckon with over the decades to come.