2011 Cos d'Estournel, St-Estèphe (Pre-Arrival)
Powerful tannins are embedded into this wine's huge velvet cushion of ripe black plum, spiced fruit and chocolate. The wine shows the juicy character of the vintage, which follows right to the end with firm tannins.
Very dense and structured with spices, currants and berries and an underlying spiciness. Full body, with chewy tannins and a fresh finish. Structured. Firm. Slightly hollow center palate. Excellent considering the difficulty St. Estephe had with hail and early harvesting.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Bright deep ruby. Closed nose hints at ripe black plum, cassis, coffee and violet. Fresh, clean and straightforward on entry, then a little tighter in the middle; needs time in the glass, and a little more sweet creamy flesh would have been nice too. Still, a very successful wine for the vintage. Only 30% of the total production went into the grand vin.
Lilac and violet aromas quickly give way to dark toasted spice and black tea notes, followed by remarkably creamy-textured cassis and plum compote flavors, all offset beautifully by a hint of bitter cherry and tamarind on the finish. There's a saturated feel that shows no hard edges. A touch languid rather than driven, but this wine tends to put on weight and gain greater focus as it ages. Tasted non-blind.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Because of a smaller than normal crop as well as the elimination of vineyard parcels devastated by the hail storm of September 1, production for Cos d'Estournel in 2011 is the smallest since 1991. Production for the 2011 Cos d’Estournel (65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc that achieved 13.5% natural alcohol) is about 30% of their normal volume. An outstanding effort, this deep ruby/purple-colored wine exhibits notes of lead pencil shavings, black currants, boysenberries, cedar and earth. Made in a traditional style with more acidity and noticeable tannin than in recent years, this medium-bodied, pure 2011 should drink nicely for 15+ years.
** 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc. Cos had a small crop because of hail damage. The wine showed tons of red currant fruit. Tannic on the mid-palate, but will be fine. Trey: Black licorice aromas, this is an inky, dark, meaty, chewy wine, with a ripe nose. Concentrated and intense. Lacks finesse and elegance now. A big and bold wine.