2009 Montrose, St-Estèphe

SKU #1115200 100 points James Suckling

 Blueberries, currants and Indian spices on the nose follow through to a full body, with ultra-fine tannins and a lovely finish. It's intense and refined. A beauty. It goes on for minutes. Speechless. Better and cleaner than the great 1990. Try in 2022.  (3/2012)

100 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Harvested between September 17 and October 5, this wine seems always open for business, so to speak, much like the great 1982s. The summer of 2009 was very hot and dry, which got the harvest off to a reasonably early start. The blend was 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot. Jean Bernard Delmas’ goal was to find perfect equilibrium between freshness and concentration, given its incredible opulence and the voluptuous character this vintage offered. That’s what this wine has in abundance. With an astounding dense purple color, the wine has velvety, sweet tannins, and an extremely open-knit and opulent blueberry, blackberry and creme de cassis nose. There is scorched earth, vanilla and, again, telltale licorice and spice. It is unctuously textured – thicker and juicier than the 2010 and more forward. This wine should come into its own in another five years. And again, it has at least 50+ years of aging potential. (RP)  (8/2014)

98 points Decanter

 The 2009 Montrose shows elegant, rich, well-placed fruit, full of generosity. It's silky and velvety in texture, with good freshness despite the exoticism of the fruit structure, with black pepper and garrigue edging. The tannins are still pretty biting and the acidity is higher than many in 2009. Settling in for the long haul, this is without doubt a Montrose that has form and future. (JA)  (2/2019)

98 points Vinous

 The 2009 Montrose has a taut, brilliantly defined bouquet with intense black fruit laced with crushed stone, forest floor, crushed rose petals and a touch of slate. Magnificent. The palate is medium-bodied with firm tannin, good depth and grip, plenty of graphite locked in here with a bravura finish that indicates that this Saint-Estèphe is in for the long-haul. It may well deserve a higher score as it evolves in bottle. Everything you wish for in a Montrose. Tasted blind at Farr Vintners’ 2009 Bordeaux tasting. (NM) 98+  (3/2019)

97 points Wine Spectator

 A bit of a brute, with a very chewy bittersweet ganache, tobacco and roasted fig core splayed open right now by a dagger of roasted apple wood, allspice and cedar. Long and dense through the finish, with a strong singed iron edge. The stuffing is certainly there, but this will take a while to come together as it's running unbridled right now. Proves you can still get classic old-school Bordeaux. Best from 2020 through 2040. (JM)  (3/2012)

96 points Wine Enthusiast

 Enormous tannins, dominant black fruit and a solid, dense structure. The wine, packed with dark fruits, dry tannins, very firm in character. With its huge tannins as well as fruit, this is a wine that really needs many years of aging. *Cellar Selection* (RV)  (4/2012)

93-95 points John Gilman

 For lovers of old school claret, the 2009 Montrose is your wine! Jean Delmas has eschewed every modern accoutrement in this traditionally-styled, broad-shouldered and very structured Montrose, and I am hard-pressed to think of any vintage since the legendary wines of the 1920s that have emerged from this property with this kind of potential. The bouquet is deep, reticent and bottomless, as it offers up scents of cassis, black cherries, tobacco leaf, cigar ash, a very complex base of gravelly soil tones and a bit of cedary wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and powerful in a very classic way (in comparison to the caricature of a wine at Cos this year), with a rock solid core of fruit, very firm, but ripe and well-integrated tannins, tangy acids and a very, very long, focused and soil-driven finish. This is the real deal in 2009 and clearly one of the wines of the vintage. (Drink between 2025-2075)  (3/2010)

Jancis Robinson

 Very dark purple. Fresh and concentrated. Really very luscious and beautifully balanced. This is looking most impressive now. Very Montrose and very 2009. Rich and ripe. 18.5/20 points (JR)  (2/2019)

K&L Notes

100 points Lisa Perotti-Brown in Wine Advocate: "Hallelujah—what a glorious nose! The deep garnet colored 2009 Montrose features beautiful Black Forest cake, licorice, crème de cassis and warm blueberries scents with hints of charcoal, truffles, tapenade and menthol plus a waft of star anise. The palate is full-bodied, rich, super concentrated and yet superbly harmonious with a firm backbone of ripe, grainy tannins and wonderful freshness, finishing long and mineral laced." (3/2019)


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Varietal:

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.
Country:

France

- 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.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

Specific Appellation:

Saint Estephe

- The northern-most of the Medoc communes, St. Estephe is quickly becoming one of the favorite areas for both high quality and great value Bordeaux reds. While it has fewer classified growths than the other communes, it also boasts some of the hottest up and coming chateaux of the last several. The most famous chateaux are the second growths Montrose and Cos d'Estournel with Calon Segur (3rd growth), Lafon Rochet (4th growth), and Cos Labory (5th growth) rounding out the cru classe wines. Cabernet Sauvignon dominates the area, but plantings of Merlot are on the rise resulting in rounder, fatter, flashier wines than in years past.