1996 Cos d'Estournel, St-Estèphe
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Saturated deep ruby. Ineffable aromas of black fruits, minerals, licorice and Havana tobacco. Rich, dense and thick; powerful but harmonious. Layered texture over a strong backbone. Very long on the palate, with thoroughly ripe, noble cabernet tannins. Superb.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Made from 65% Cabernet Sauvignon and 35% Merlot, this is a huge, backward wine. The 1996 possesses an opaque purple color, as well as pure aromatics consisting of cassis, grilled herbs, coffee, and toasty new oak. Massive in the mouth, and one of the most structured and concentrated young Cos d'Estournels I have ever tasted, this thick, structured, tannic wine has closed down significantly since bottling. It requires 7-8 years of cellaring, and should last for 30-35 years. It is a fabulous Cos, but patience is required. (RP)
Lots of tobacco, berry and spice character on the nose. Light herbal undertone. Full-bodied, with fine tannins and a caressing, pretty-textured finish. Chewy. I would wait a little. 1995 looks better to me now. Outstanding but not as exciting as I remember. (Web-2007)
Deep crimson. Quite intense even if not quite as noble and distinct as the 1998. Still a bit of a blob. Some tannin still and marked acidity. Still a bit of a bruiser. I'd wait to see it calm down a bit. Some straightforward blackcurrant wine gums. Zesty. Just a bit youthful.