Ron Blachman's Product Reviews

  • Rating:
    (4/5/2015)
    Chateau Cos d'Estournel  2003
    Sold Out $299.99
    1982 vintage available for $389.00
    Style: Big & Bold
    Tasted in April 2015. As a second great growth Cos d'Estournel is expected to bottle only those wines which meet a high standard; they also have a history of making very substantial wines that need time. This meets those criteria but I don't think it is particularly exciting - especially considering the price of such a wine. The 2003's I've had reminds me in some ways of the 1961's and 1964's both rather hard-edged, both took a lot more time to reach maturity than I expected. By the time they were really ready the 61's (a supposed vintage of the century) were fascinating, sometimes exceptional in some respects but a bit tired, too; the 64's came around very slowly and those that didn't go funky could be astounding examples of aged claret but hey remained somewhat hard-edged even then. I don't know which way this 2003 is going. It is still too young by a decade or more. Definitely decant this wine as it is throwing a bit of sediment. It took two hours for the nose to blossom and it is complex and starting to mature but I wonder if the bouquet will mature before the wine is as round on the palate as I'd like. This wants until 2023 or later. Who knows, maybe by then it will be astounding but right now it is still rather hard and there are much better St Estephe around for less money.
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  • Rating:
    (3/31/2015)
    Chateau du Moulin a Vent  Moulin-a-Vent 2011
    $39.99
    Pair with: Marinated Lamb, Tart tomato-sauced dishes
    Tasted March 2015. Medium purple-red, light-to-medium body, slow to form legs. The nose starts out medium sized with a vinous Gamay theme and hints of berries and roses but this dissipates fairly rapidly in the glass. A lively tartness leads the flavors and there is (just barely) enough fruit to carry it off, it isn't big but it works very well with food. With an hour's air the color is slightly darker and the balance a bit better; there's a bit of tannin to round things out. This wants a bit more fruit and fragrance. The cork is first quality and long but I wouldn't hold this past about 2018. I was buying 2011's of this quality for less money two years ago but I've been disappointed by the 2012's and 2013's so this might fill a hole in the market and the price is understandable.
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  • Rating:
    (3/31/2015)
    Chateau du Moulin a Vent  Croix des Verillats 2011
    $51.99
    Style: Earth & Spicy
    Pair with: Marinated Meats, Bouillabaise
    Tasted in March 2015, the wine is medium-dark purple-garnet, medium bodied and somewhat leggy. The big, Gamay nose features red-berries, rose-petals, green hay (I like this but not everyone does) and a hint of yeastiness; with air the floral notes grow and the yeastiness vanishes. On the palate a lively, bracing acidity leads the way with just enough fruit to carry it off and a firm tannin note to round things out. With some air the fruit-to-acid balance seems improved and a pleasant finish develops. This is big and very good now but it will probably improve for the next three to five years and might hold as late as 2025. It is well corked to last. I agree with Parker's 92 rating...a bit more fruit could have put this near greatness. This is a bit pricey but I haven't had any really good 2012 or 2013 Cru-Beaujolais so a premium for top 2011's is understandable.
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