The 2003 Cos d Estournel revels in a vintage that shone in Saint-Estephe. In some ways it is a prototype of the 2009 however, the 2003 feels more natural, more a product of the growing season than a premeditated crowd-pleaser like the 2009. It has that almost gregarious bouquet with plush raspberry ripple, vanilla pod, creme de cassis and pencil lead aromas. As I have noted previously, it has shed a lot of baby fat in recent years, less flamboyant than in its youth. What is so surprising is the delineation evident in this wine, something that it shares with the 2003 Montrose and a virtue denuded many other Left Bank 2003s, especially in the southern Medoc. Maybe at the moment the Montrose just has the edge but that should take nothing away from one of the best 2003s you will find. Tasted at the Cos d Estournel vertical in London.
Anticipated maturity: 2020-2050
Robert Parker 93
Harvest finished this year on September 25. The 2003 Cos d’Estournel is a blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc. It has a deep garnet-brick color and quite an herbal nose with notions of dried Mediterranean herbs and roasted meats over a core of creme de cassis, stewed plums and unsmoked cigars plus a touch of new leather. Full, rich, concentrated and decadent in the mouth, the palate, though medium-bodied, packs a wallop of fruit with plenty of earthy/savory accents and an herbal lift to the finish.
Anticipated maturity: 2018-2030
Dark bricky garnet. Rich and spicy with dried-fruit aromas but also a leafy note. Fine-grained, dry but not at all drying. More elegant than many. Lively and harmonious and attractively dry. Finesse and decent freshness to the end. (JH)
Anticipated maturity: 2010-2018