2003 Cos D’Estournel
The prodigious, fantastic 2003 Cos d’Estournel is a candidate for “wine of the vintage.” A blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon (unusually high for this chateau), 30% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc, 17,500 cases were produced from low yields. An inky/blue/purple color is accompanied by a compelling perfume of black fruits, subtle smoke, pain grille, incense, and flowers. With extraordinary richness, full body, and remarkable freshness, elegance, and persistence, this is one of the finest wines ever made by this estate. The good news is that it will be drinkable at a young age yet evolve for three decades or more. Kudos to winemaker Jean-Guillaume Prats and owner Michel Reybier. Robert Parker 98 pts. Prev. notes below: Potentially the finest Cos d’Estournel I have ever tasted, this wine seems to have put on even more weight and gained strength even after its formidable performance nine months ago. Eighty percent new oak was used and the wine was aged on its lees until early summer of last year. A brilliant effort that is super-concentrated, yet also elegant and harmonious, the wine has an inky/purple color to the rim and a glorious nose of classic creme de cassis intermixed with some smoke, graphite, licorice, fig, and vanilla. Full-bodied, opulently textured, and incredibly concentrated, it has surprising freshness and definition for a wine of such intensity and richness. Jean-Guillaume Prats told me that the finished pH is only 3.6, which is lower than I would have suspected given the wine’s textural richness. Moreover, the alcohol is relatively high for a Bordeaux at 13.5% (compare that to the 13.1% of the 1990). The finish goes on for almost a minute as this is a truly profound wine that should take its place in the pantheon of great Bordeaux wines for many decades to come. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2030+.