A very polished wine, with hints of cedarwood, coffee bean and spice on the nose. In the palate the initial attack is one of power and intensity, and then the richness of the fruit takes hold to reveal a wine of subtlety underneath. Beautifully integrated and very long.
Deep opaque colour, with floral summer fruit aromas. A full and muscular wine, with intense dark fruit flavours and hints of vanilla and cocoa. The tightly entwined tannins provide tension and power, whilst the finish is uplifting and very fresh. Strong potential.
The Château Montrose 2014 is a blend of 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot that represents 47% of the total production. It was picked from mid-September via five or six tries through the vineyard. The aromatics represent a clear step in quality from the second wine, attired with far more precision and focus, much more purity with scents of blackberry, boysenberry and blue fruit, now with touches of violet and vanilla. It is beautifully defined and actually, at least at this juncture, closely aligned with Cos d’Estournel 2014. The palate is medium-bodied with filigree tannin that underpin layers of pure mineral-rich black fruit. There is an enthralling sense of energy and precision here and it fans out remarkably on the finish. Dare I say, this is one grand vin that comes perilously close to matching the heights of the 2009 and 2010. This is a brilliant Montrose, one of the best you will find on the Left Bank this vintage. Tasted on five separate occasions, twice at the château.
47% of production. 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot. Very muted nose. Seems rich and heavy but not that expressive aromatically. Big and bold and ambitious with a good balance between fruit and tannins. Acid reasonably well in check. And very definitely St-Estèphe. Pretty brutal – without the charm and glamour of Cos – but probably very true to the archetype. Good tannin management but nothing at all confected or too modern. Inky finish. Drink 2024-2040
As sleek and tightly coiled as they come, with wonderful purity and cut to the red and black currant and red and black cherry fruit. The long iron spine is thoroughly embedded and a gorgeous echo of charcoal lingers at the very end of the lightly pebbly finish. Everything finally seems to be coming together here.
This is a fabulous young red with blackberries, currants and wet earth. Full body, firm tannins. Very long finish. It really takes off.
The 2014 Montrose is one of the most intriguing wines of the vintage. An elegant, beautifully layered wine, the 2014 Montrose comes across as incredibly silky and polished. The typical Montrose power, richness and breath take a backseat to a total sense of refinement, as the 2014 is a remarkably nuanced and noble wine. Beams of acidity and minerality give the finish its salivating energy and brightness. Given that Montrose is slow to develop, my sense is that the 2014 is not ready to show all of its cards just yet. Today, it's all about potential, and there is plenty of that here. Sweet red cherry plum, dried flowers and spices are some of the notes that are laced into the exquisite, alluring finish. The blend is 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot that represents 47% of the total production.
Dense, irony Cabernet nose and deep chalky fruit typical of Montrose. Rich but with clarity and precision, robust yet elegant – one for the long term Drink: 2022-2045
(61 Cabernet Sauvignon, 30 Merlot, 8 Cabernet Franc, 1 Petit Verdot) This wine shows an intense nose and a lovely, initial burst of both red and black fruit with no trace of greenness in sight. The Merlot component here seems to be fit, slippery and also spicy. There is stunning fruit here with a classic Saint-Estèphe combination of charm and austerity. The tannins are racy and mouth-watering and the texture, while not as luxuriant as some, is spot on. This is a charming Montrose which will start to drink sooner than most vintages, but it will really soften and open out after a decade. I know that more tannin will build in this wine during its time in barrel but this will not overpower the fruit. I tip Montrose as one of the quiet stars of the vintage.
For years Montrose has been in the shadow of its more decadent, flashy neighbour, Cos d'Estournel.Quietly confident, it is a brilliant performer in notably dry, sunny vintages due to its dense clay soil that allows the vines to remain hydrated. In 2003, this was particularly true as many deemed it wine of the vintage. They have a new director, Jean-Bernard Delmas, a legend amongst the Bordelais having run Haut Brion and La Mission Haut Brion for 40 years, so quality is only likley to get better and better.
St Estèphe is the most northern of Médoc communal crus. Its unique terroir is made up of layers of gravel which are supported by a dense clay base. This subsoil retains water in dry seasons and works particularly well with Merlot, a largely planted variety which is used to flesh out Cabernet Sauvignon. This clay base also creates powerful, textured tannins which enable St Estèphe to stand out from the pack. Like St Julien, it is one of the four most important communal appellations of the Médoc which does not contain any first growths, despite its southern border being a stone'sthrow from Château Lafite. Nonetheless, it is home to some excellent châteaux making fine wines such as Cos d'Estournel, Montrose, Calon Ségur and Lafon Rochet.