Chateau Cos d'Estournel 2010
Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Estephe, Bordeaux, France
The 2000 vintage of this wine was ranked #2 on the Wine Spectator's Top 10 Wines of 2003
Cos d'Estournel has become, in the eyes of lovers of fine wines, the archetype of a certain style of masculine elegance in which immense power is combined with grace and smoothness. Impressive when young for the intensity of its structure and explosive fruit, Cos d'Estournel evolves slowly to arrive, when completely mature (after ten to thirty years) at an admirable smoothness and aromatic complexity.
The Wine Advocate - "The 2010 is a more structured, restrained, less flamboyant version of the 2009. A final blend of 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 19% Merlot and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot that hit 14.5% natural alcohol, this wine (which represents only 55% of the estate's production) is full-bodied, classic and built along the lines of the 2000 (although that wine was made before Reybier acquired the estate and upgraded quality significantly). This wine exhibits beautifully pure notes of creme de cassis, blueberry liqueur, pen ink, graphite and hints of toast and vanillin. The wine is full and rich, and although aged in 80% new oak, the wood is a subtle background component. This beauty will take longer to round into shape than the dramatic and compelling 2009. Forget it for 5-8 years, and drink it over the following three-plus decades.
James Suckling - "Lifted nose of dried flowers, walnuts and dark fruits. Intense nose. A full-bodied wine, with powerful flavors of blackberries, coffee, dried herbs and spices. Super silky tannins and a long, long finish. Layered and flashy."
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com - "Cos is going back to its roots, the 2010 Ch Cos d'Estournel has returned to Saint-Estephe ways after flirting with flamboyancy. For a while, I was seeing so much lavish oak and extreme ripeness that I could not fine the stones and minerality in this wine. Of course, many of us drank and enjoyed those wines anyway. I really like this vintage for its return to purity. (Best Served: 2022-2040) "
Wine Spectator - "An extremely well-sculpted, modern wine, with an enormous core of plum sauce, blackberry coulis and cassis fruit to match the ambitious roasted apple wood-, black tea- and tobacco-infused toast. Dense and chewy now, displaying the tannic spine of the vintage, this remains integrated, racy and incredibly long, offering a piercing chalky backbone that rivets everything together. Best from 2018 through 2038."
Wine Enthusiast - "This is a complex and rich wine dominated by superripe fruit. It is a wine of extremes, of fruit, of dark tannins allied to some bitterness from the black chocolate extract. Ripe plums and sweet black fruits are given a lift at the end with bright acidity."
International Wine Cellar - "Full, bright ruby. Superripe but vibrant nose offers liqueur-like cassis, graphite, mocha and exotic oak scents; smells thick! Then plush, dense, large-scaled and seamless, offering extraordinary breadth and a 3-D texture to its dark fruit, graphite and mineral flavors. This very modern style of Cos finishes with outstanding, building, palate-saturating persistence and utterly sweet tannins. 94(+?) points "
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Chateau Cos d'Estournel Winery
Château Cos d'Estournel is a Grand Cru vineyard located in St. Estephe. Its oriental facade is adorned with three pagoda turrets, all cast in a soft golden sandstone. Château Cos d'Estournel today covers 170 acres separated from Château Lafite, along the southern edge, by the stream between St. Estephe and Pauillac. The gravelly soil, over a flint, limestone and silicate subsoil low in nitrogen, has eroded over centuries to form steep ridges which perfectly drain the vineyards. The vineyards are planted 60 percent in Cabernet Sauvignon vines, 2 percent of Cabernet Franc, and 38 percent in Merlot. Naturally, the percentage of Cabernet or Merlot in the composition of each vintage depends on the climate which favors one grape variety or the other. View all Chateau Cos d'Estournel Wines
About St. EstepheView a map of St. Estephe wineries (saint ess-TEFF)
St.-Estèphe is the northernmost of the 4 communes hugging the Dordogne river in the Northern Haut-Médoc area of Bordeaux. While the appellation has no premier crus (first growths) of its own, it's southernmost chateau, Cos d'Estournel, is a highly acclaimed second growth, geographically separated from the famed Lafite-Rothschild in Pauillac by only a stream. Many believe Cos d'Estournel consistently produces wine of a first growth level.
Notable FactsWine from St-Estèphe typically matures more slowly than its southern counterparts. The soil is heavy and rich with clay, leading to wines with firm, muscular tannins and high acidity. Dark and opaque in color, the wines can be a bit austere in their youth, though most get softer as they age. Cabernet Sauvignon is the primary grape in most of the region's blends, although Merlot is important in helping to soften the wines. In volume, St-Estèphe creates the most wines of the top four Haut-Médoc communes. There are quite a few Cru Bourgeois properties, which are more approachable when young and, even better, lower in price. To get a feel for St-Estèphe, look for Cru Bourgeois like Chateau Haut-Beauséjour.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.