A hint of pencil lead and slate -a lovely nose.
This is Grenache heavy and shows it - big, mouth filling violet candy, Thai basil, Greek oregano, river stone, blackberry compote, firm, yet unobtrusive tannins. Black Pepper, just before the Chile pepper acidity kicks in.
Very happy with this CDP, and this needs to be drunk youngish. — 4 months ago
The 2018 Montrose delivers on the promise that it showed from barrel. I gave this a three-hour decant before broaching, since Montrose is always backward, albeit far less ferociously than even just a decade ago. It offers copious blackberry and blueberry scents on the nose, plus pressed violets and a light estuarine scent that becomes accentuated with time. The palate is medium-bodied with a silky-smooth texture. Finely chiseled tannins frame multilayered black fruit infused with crushed stone, and it has retained that subtle graphite element that lends it a Pauillac-like personality, though less so than out of barrel. This is a beautifully defined Montrose with entrancing symmetry, and it should drink earlier than other recent vintages thanks to a little more pliancy. (Neal Martin, Vinous, March 2021)
— 4 months ago
Moderate tasting:) — 2 days ago
From Bacchus, St. Martin, 19€ — 23 days ago
When I tasted the 2018 Cheval Blanc from barrel, I felt that it deserved a very good score, though not one that implied potential perfection. The bottle was tasted upon opening, but I only began to pen my tasting note after 3–4 hours’ decanting. I still find the bouquet more open than many recent vintages, the ripe brambly red fruit intermingling with clove, sage and light graphite notes originating from the Cabernet components (46% of the final blend). It is a really seductive bouquet, though not as complex or as nuanced as, say, the astonishing 2016 or the impressive 2015. The palate is medium-bodied with refined tannins. A harmonious and elegant Cheval Blanc that has retained the linearity I remarked upon in barrel. So it is not a flamboyant Cheval Blanc like the Cabernet-dominated 2017, but it is a far better wine thanks to the Merlot imparting flesh and rondeur. The finish is extremely precise but never powerful, almost Burgundy-like in weight, with a lightly spiced aftertaste. As the hours pass in the decanter, it gains depth and a little more precision on the finish. This does not possess the otherworldly profundity to equal legends such as the 1934, 1964 or 2016; it is simply a wonderful Cheval Blanc to sit back and savor as a Saint-Émilion par excellence. (Neal Martin, Vinous, March 2021)
— 4 months ago
Nice red blend. Good with dinner. M — 23 days ago
From Dec 2029 Ets Martin, 2016 in 4/30/2021. Red plum, maraschino cherry, battery smell, smoke, iodine. Low tannin. Muscular not plush. Finish quick to cedary flatness — 3 months ago
The 2018 Figeac continues to not put a toe, let alone a foot, wrong under head winemaker Frédéric Faye. The bottle is closed initially, and in fact it was only the following morning that it began to unfold and reveal its true character. Quintessential Figeac on the nose, it offers blackberry, briar, pencil shavings courtesy of the Cabernet Sauvignon, and touch of terracotta. Beautifully defined, as we have come to expect these days; I might well confuse it for a Pomerol. The palate is medium-bodied and has soaked up the 100% new oak. Lithe tannins render this more approachable than the Figeacs of yesteryear, yet it maintains the same DNA. Elegant and refined, it gently fans out with pure, slightly tertiary black fruit and traces of clove and bay leaf. To quote my conclusion from barrel, it is still "cool, calm and collected" on the finish. Divine. (Neal Martin, Vinous, March 2021)
— 4 months ago
The 2018 Bélair-Monange, so impressive out of barrel, delivers now that it finds itself incarcerated by glass. It is endowed with a seriously impressive nose, delivering blackberry and still that faint warm brick/terracotta scent, shaved black truffle and a touch of clove. You could lose yourself completely in this bouquet. The palate has firmed up a little, displaying more backbone than I recall. The dash of cracked black pepper liberally sprinkled over the finish curiously bears similarities to some of the Pomerols this vintage, and the Cabernet Franc feels much more prominent than its 2% contribution to the blend would suggest. I adore this Saint-Émilion and it is going to benefit from 8–10 years in the cellar... if you can resist temptation that long. (Neal Martin, Vinous, March 2021)
— 4 months ago