Robert Parker's Wine Advocate 30/06/2004 A beautiful effort, the 2001 Cos d’Estournel (65% Cabernet Sauvignon and 35% Merlot) exhibits a poised, noble bouquet of black currants, cedar, spice box, and licorice. A hint of truffles emerges as it sits in the glass. Medium-bodied with sweet fruit (mostly black) and nicely integrated wood, it builds incrementally in the mouth, ending with a 50-second finish. Drink this stylish, restrained yet substantial claret over the next 15+ years.
Made in an elegant, approachable style without the blockbuster depth and meat found in the finest vintages (2000 and 1996), this is a dark plum/garnet/ruby-colored, seductive, evolved, delicious 2001. Aromas of black olives, cedar, cassis, damp earth, and licorice, medium to full body, soft tannin, and an easy-going personality suggest consumption over the next 12-14 years is warranted
One of the top successes of the vintage, this blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot was harvested between October 8 and 24. The late harvest ensured perfect ripeness as evidenced by the sweet bouquet of black cherries, lead pencil shavings, cassis and subtle barbecue smoke. Well-balanced with good acidity, ripe tannins, medium to full body and a layered mouthfeel, this excellent 2008 can be drunk now and over the next 15+ years. Wine Advocate.May, 2011
The sexy, dark ruby/purple-tinged 2006 l’Evangile achieved 14% natural alcohol, as high as any of the great vintages at this estate. Abundant amounts of dark raspberry and black cherry fruit intertwined with sweet plums and hints of figs as well as spring flowers jump from the glass of this medium to full-bodied, fleshy, supple-textured, silky wine. Drink it now or cellar it for 15-20 years.
Big brooding colour – black almost to the rim. A sumptuous nose of rich, ripe, generous fruit, the palate too is ultra-succulent. Exhibits a bottomless wealth of flavours which are supported by perfectly balanced tannins and acidity. Clearly one of the wines of the vintage. A powerfully built st-estèphe yet in unison and harmony.
The 1996 is more masculine on the nose with graphite and tobacco, a touch of sea salt developing with time, an estuarine tincture that is refreshing and speaks of its place. The palate is medium-bodied with firm tannins, a saline touch on the entry, much more closed than the nose, obdurate as usual, quite austere towards the cedar and tobacco and mint dominated finish.
Bordeaux Blend . Talbot is a wine that needs 5-8 years to reveal its class and character. The Chateau makes consistently fine, robust, yet fruity, full bodied wines that would be moved upward should any reclassification of the Medoc could be done. Deep elegant layered nose. Deep purple colour; hint of garnet. Thick legs. On the palate layers of sweet fruit, slightly smokey, rounded and succulent. Soft tannins. Moderate length. Should last 10 years more. Very elegant.
Château Smith Haut-Lafitte, Pessac-Léognan 2000: Dark, saturated cherry red in color. The nose is intoxicating with aromas of ripe blackberries, cassis preserves, camphor, English toffee, smoke, wet forest floor and barnyard funk. Full-bodied, velvety and caressing mouth-feel. On first attack, crushed ripe Black forest fruits and smoky pipe tobacco, followed by cherries, graphite, dried mushrooms, earth, medium acidity and integrated, teeth-staining tannins with notes of bakers chocolate on the seemingly endless, plush, elegant and round finish. Certainly one of the 5-10 best kosher wines ever made, truly decadent and outstanding. 13% Abv. Drink now-2020.
Rhone Valley. Syrah grape. Dark purple. Hugely aromatic, utterly seductive bouquet of kirsch, blackcurrant, olive, grilled meat and fresh flowers. Bitter cherry and violet pastille flavors pack a major punch, with slow-building tannins adding structure. Became slowly brighter with air, picking up spiced plum and cocoa flavors and finishing with supple tannins and an endless progression of dark berry qualities.
With its remarkable complexity of aromas - dark berries, leather, liquorice, roasted coffee, oriental spices, etc. - the La Landonne wine offers exceptional structure without neglecting the wonderful suppleness of its tannins. Its richness and concentration are matched only by its exceptionally long ageing potential for a Rhône wine: up to 35 years in the best years.
Bordeaux Blend. Paullac . There are only 10,000 cases of this extraordinarily rich, dense 2002 that is as powerful as the 2003 (even the alcohol levels are nearly the same, 12.85%) . It is dark ruby/purple to the rim, with notes of English walnuts, crushed rocks, black currants, and forest floor, dense, full-bodied, and opulent, yet classic with spectacular aromatics, marvelous purity, and a full-bodied finish that lasts just over 50+ seconds. Huge richness and the sweetness of the tannin are somewhat deceptive as this wine seems set for a long life. Administrator Frederic Engerer seems to be more pleased with what Latour achieved in 2002 than in any other recent vintage. Hats off to him for an extraordinary accomplishment in a vintage that wouldn’t have been expected to produce the raw materials to achieve something at this level of quality. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2045."