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2016 Bordeaux Tasting Notes - St Estèphe


St Estèphe

NB. The figures beneath each wine name relate to the percentage of each grape variety (CS Cabernet Sauvignon, CF Cabernet Franc, M Merlot, PV Petit Verdot) and IPT means Index Phénolique Total (the total level of phenolics including tannin). 

2016 Château Capbern Gasqueton, St Estèphe
69CS; 4CF; 25M; 2PV. IPT84.
A richly scented wine of dark cherry and plum fruit and a smokiness like toasted nuts, plus leafy, floral notes. Entry is dry, then super-minerally fresh. This shows sustained, rich structure and I like it a great deal.

2016 Marquis de Calon, St Estèphe
55M; 45CS. IPT82.
A nose of pot pourri and smoke. This is both firmer and more rockily mineral than the Capbern. Fruit is blackcurrant and very dark flowers. A firm wine, full of structure. It is tacky with very rich, BIG grip. Fresh and full of intent. Very long. A more serious thing than hitherto, I think. Lots here.

2016 Château Calon Ségur, St Estèphe
60CS; 18CF; 20M; 2PV. (N.B. There was no CF in 2015, which contained 85CS; 13M; 2PV.) IPT80.
Midnight in the glass. Nose is rich and smoky and licorous. Very blackcurrant and very dark are the aromas. Creamy, smoked, pure fruit, very, very dark. Palate is rich and supple and shows dark plum and blackcurrant smoked fruit on entry. Tannin is upright. And this is a well controlled thing with a core of rocky-textured mineraslity. Long, with a pure rock death, rich and solid.

2016 Les Pagodes de Cos, St Estèphe
50CS; 46.5M; 3PV; 0.5CF
Red and black fruits on the nose, very domestic including raspberry and currant leaf. Entry is very cool. Again fruit is domestic and takes in a touch of ripe red apples. Rich and tacky tannins and there's a core of really well-covered acidity. Very cool wine. Dense and densely structured. Very, very long, direct and fresh. Delicious!

2016 Château Cos d'Estournel, St Estèphe
Dark and pure blackcurrant fruit on a nose that includes scents of gravel and tobacco, as well as a hint of mint. A cool wine with very rich, clay-like tannins. Long and very cool and loaded with upright and altiogether fabulous tannin. Disarmingly elegant example and a real winner in '16.

2016 Château Cos Labory, St Estèphe
44M; 53CS; 3PV. 13.5%abv. 72IPT.
A clay-like nuance to the dark fruit that comes over as sauvages in character. And there's a hint of the pot pourri bowl. Touch of creaminess to the aromas, yet there's decent tang here. A very cool wine, nicely composed and elegant. Just a medium weight thing, but linear, cool and pretty. I like this. And you won't have too long to wait. Very long wine.

2016 Château Le Crock, St Estèphe
46M; 40CS; 8CF; 6PV. IPT94.
Clay-like blackcurrant aromas and the biscuit wood. The entry is berryish and pure, of fruits red and black. Fruit is fluid and attractive. This is a fully structured wine of very good sustain to a ripely, chunkily tannic ending. Pure berry fruit to be found here. A long and assertive wine. Very St Estèphe. Juicy grip at the back, then a saline death. Very nice.

2016 Château Lafon Rochet, St Estèphe
25M; 67CS; 2PV; 6CF. 13.5%abv. 84IPT.
A rich nose and quite a smoky-oaky one. Ripe red apple aromas plus dawn-picked blackcurrants. This is ripe and surprisingly forward. Finally, some grippy-fresh tannins emerge but don't render it any less forward a thing. Fresh and really elegant. And it's knit, with a core of rocky-fresh minerality. Very long. A charmer!

2016 La Dame de Montrose, St Estèphe
52M; 35CS; 2CF; 11PV
Rich and dark and much more on its Cabernet than the Tronquoy Lalande. Aromas are smoky-dark and rather aristo, with floral depths. Black raspberry. This is cool and controlled with a gravel-rocky core of structure. Indeed, this is loaded with structure. Fresh, floral-dark fruits. Confident in its grip. A wine of rocky soils. Long, to a big solid finish. Compelling stuff.

2016 Château Montrose, St Estèphe
68CS; 25M; 7CF. 78IPT.
Woodland flowers and dark fruits and gravel adorn the blackcurrant purity, ripe and dark. This is dry with structure from the front. Loaded with rocky structure, this: fine and very dense. Very confident wine, very juicy. Great bulky sustain, yet this manages to be fresh and light on its feet, too. A clever trick; a wonderful example.

2016 Château de Pez, St Estèphe
42CS; 53M; 3PV; 2CF. 13.8%abv. 80IPT.
Dark and meaty and smoky nose with a touch of iodine/salt. Dark, dark plum fruit. This is rich and richly structured with tacky-fine nicely integreated tannin. Long and quite a plush thing, this. Elegant. Fine, rock-earth structure. Very good.

2016 Château Phélan Ségur, 
St Estèphe
55CS; 45M. 13.8%abv. 87IPT.
Very nice, subtle nose of pure blackcurrant, ripe fruit and smoky wood. Hint of nut. Entry is creamy-cool and elegant and the palate in general offers lovely ripeness of structure: rich, quite chunky tannins. Very long wine. A fresh - even airy - thing. Long and pretty linear with spice in the grip. Very long thing.


2016 Château Tronquoy Lalande, St Estèphe
58M; 34CS; 6PV; 2CF;. 15%abv. 86IPT.
Midnight hued, with a dry nose of dark midnight plums. Wild fruits. There's dry structure right through this. Black, wild plum fruit. The piquant tannic grip becomes spicy. This is very long and is very juicy at the core to its busy death. Direct, with quite powerful sustain and a fabulous ending, really intense and spiced. Good Tronquoy.

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