2003 Coufran, Haut-Médoc

SKU #1029814 Jancis Robinson

 Rich and thick and flattering. Almost animal it's so ripe but lots of pleasure. A little bit of greenness on the finish but lots to go at.  (7/2009)

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 This primarily Merlot-based wine represents an excellent effort from this property. This deep plum/ruby/purple-tinged hussy boasts plenty of jammy black cherry fruit interwoven with notions of smoke, vanilla, and white chocolate. It is a sexy, up-front, fleshy effort with low acidity as well as abundant fruit, glycerin, and texture. Consume it over the next 7-8 years.  (4/2006)

Wine Spectator

 Lots of plum, berry and cherry aromas follow through to a full-bodied palate, with silky tannins and a long finish. Very tight now. Give it time. Best after 2007.  (3/2006)

K&L Notes

According to Robert Parker: "After twenty-five years of tasting the newest Bordeaux vintage at approximately six months of age, I have never seen a year as irregular and fascinating as 2003. This is not surprising given the historic extremes of weather France endured in June, July, and August, 2003. The marketplace perception is that this is an exceptional vintage with a personality not dissimilar from such hot vintages as 1990, 1982, and possibly ancient years such as 1959 and 1947. While there are offerings that recall the 1982s or 1990s at a similar stage (fortunately, I am not old enough to have tasted the 1947s or 1959s at six months of age), the 2003 vintage is different for many reasons. The most striking feature about the eight days I spent tasting the 2003s was that I felt like I was tasting five or six different vintages, a sentiment I never before experienced. Some wines were reminiscent of 1990, a few of 1982, but others had more in common with 1991, 1989, and 1975. The vintage is frightfully irregular, but some profoundly great wines were produced, particularly in the most favored sector, the northern Médoc." (Preliminary barrel tasting report, 04/2004)

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By: Jacques Moreira | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/2/2020 | Send Email
Coufran is one of my go-to producers to recommend to clients who enjoy that classic style of Bordeaux, and here we have “old school meets the ripeness and opulence of 2003.” It has got rich, ripe fruit aromatics, along with cocoa, vanilla, black cherries, and plums. But never over the top— all that lusciousness is kept in check by its minerality. I would drink it now, and lots of it. It is back in stock and it will fly. My advice: get it while you can, and have a nice steak dinner with it.

By: Steve Greer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/4/2011 | Send Email
This soft, ripe version of Coufran drinks well now. Boasting ripe blackberry, chocolate and spice on the nose and palate, this wine is sweet and rich.

By: Clyde Beffa Jr. | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/31/2011 | Send Email
This also has tons of ripe fruit aromas, but they are more blackberry and chocolate. It has a sweet palate impression and is a bit more forward than the 2003 Verdignan. Semi-sweet black currant finish. This wine begs to be drunk over the next five years.

By: Ralph Sands | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/31/2011 | Send Email
This has the same profile of deep black/blue fruits as the 2005, but with a hint of black olive. The heat of the 2003 vintages sets it apart and gives the wine much more open, forward middle fruit, texture and opulence. It drinks well now, but is still young. Decant two hours if you want to drink it now.

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Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them.