June 13th 2016
Hervé Berland is clearly enjoying his new role as director of this great 2nd growth estate in St Estèphe, following his retirement as Managing Director of Ch Mouton Rothschild. Investment by new owners, the Bouygues, has been substantial including one of the most architecturally impressive new chais of its generation which will most certainly stand the test of time, as will this superbly structured 2015.
£1,140 per 12 bottles IB
£1,150 per 6 magnums (150cl) IB
A stand-out wine in the appellation of St Estèphe. A classical blend of 67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc, it is full of sweet dark fruits with hints of mocha. This is a beautifully polished wine, showing huge class, with its stylish rounded tannins and the fine generosity of sweet fruit which coats the palate. The gently fresh finish gives lift and life to what will be a very suave wine in years to come. Drink 2023-2035. Goedhuis, Score: 94-96Matured in 65% new oak, it possesses some of the best aromatics you will find in the appéllation – billowing blackberry, cassis and boysenberry scents all beautifully defined and seamlessly integrated with the new oak. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, commendable depth and a vibrant bead of acidity that lends this Montrose tension from start to finish. The class comes through strongly in this wine, perhaps the best Saint Estèphe this year. Give this a decade in bottle, more if you can, since Montrose tends to repay cellaring. Drink: 2025 – 2060 Neal Martin, Score: 93-95Deep florality and wonderful black fruit. Surprisingly smooth and silky at first then the classic firmness becomes plain towards the finish. It has more natural richness than most in 2015 – a superbly made wine from a great terroir. Decanter, Score: 96
Powerful and yet restrained, this is a tangy, firm, taut Montrose with very clean, focussed fruit and a direction which is unquestionable. The oak is stunning and refreshing and while it is nearly all new oak, the fruit sings and the attack and balance are stunning. The precision and weightlessness are thrilling and you sense that the tannins are built to last 50 years – this is stunning sleight of hand. Hervé Berland (CEO) explained that by shortening the cuvaison and being desperately careful with extraction he was able to make a much more precise wine. Careful addition of press wine, of optimum quality, allowed them to build and intense but not heavy wine. This continued tinkering and fine-tuning as well as a gradual cutting back on Merlot has allowed Montrose to soar. This is an epic wine. Matthew Jukes, Score: 18.5+
Well, well, well. How good is this? St. Estèphe was supposed to be the least favoured commune in the Médoc in 2015, but this is a brilliant wine that’s up there with the best releases of the vintage. Perfumed, dense and super concentrated, with compact tannins, notes of cassis, blueberry and liquorice and very fine tannins. Drink: 2025-40 Tim Atkin MW, Score: 96