Tasting Notes Montrose 2009
Served blind at the Southwold 2009 tasting. The Montrose 2009 has an intense bouquet but it is somehow very contained at the moment. Nice precision here, perhaps a little smudged with baked cherry and bilberry fruit. The palate is soft and rounded on the entry and there is clearly immense backbone and weight. Even blind, the class shows through, but as usual it is a difficult wine to taste at the beginning of what will inevitably be a long career. Tasting a second bottle in a different flight, I noticed a more Pauillac-like personality with a powerful, burly finish that is typical of Montrose. Impressive verging on oppressive and vice versa! It will need serious ageing, lock this up for a decade before parole. Tasted January 2013.
A colossal effort, the 2009 Montrose represents a hypothetical blend of the monumental duo of 1989 and 1990 combined with the phenomenal 2003. With 13.7% alcohol (an all-time high at Montrose), it is a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot and the rest tiny quantities of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Some structure and minerality can be detected in the background, but the overall impression is one of massive blackberry, black currant and mulberry fruit intermixed with forest floor, damp earth, crushed rocks and a hint of spring flowers. Full-bodied with sweet but abundant tannin, Jean-Bernard Delmas believes this is the greatest wine he has made during his short tenure at Montrose since retiring from Haut-Brion. This wine will undoubtedly shut down for a decade, then unleash its power, glory and potential perfection. Anticipated maturity: 2020-2050+.
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.