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2011 Monbousquet, St Emilion Grand Cru Classe

Opague rubied, it has a tight rim and is very youthful. A lot to go. Fresh cedary tones from the new oak; tertiary notes warped around sweet plum, currants, crushed raspberry, blueberry, cola. There are also vivid scents of purple flowers, lavender and violet—quite some complexities from the varietals 70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc,10% Cabernet Sauvignon. On the palate, his 2011 is surprisingly intense and tensioned, showing flavours of blackberries, red cherry, minerals, liquorice and flowers. Bottle age gives some complexities. Refreshing structure. Starts drinking fine now—a bodied, modern St Emilion at almost 14% ABV.

Very few tasters interpret differently: almost we all have a firm view about the richness and structure. If you may want to look for finese, this wine may not be for you.

The score is consistent at the 93-point level. For example:

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate 93

Tiny yields of 31 hectoliters per hectare and a harvest that occurred between September 16-22 resulted in a full-throttle 2011 Monbousquet that hit 13.9% natural alcohol. The final blend was 70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. In both blind and non-blind tastings, this wine acquitted itself extremely well, placing well above many wines that cost two to three times the price. The 2011 reveals exotic notes of Asian spices, black fruits, toast, coffee bean and forest floor. Fleshy and medium to full-bodied, it is ideal for drinking over the next 10-12 years.

Tim Atkins 93

This is often my favourite wine from the Gérard Perse stable and so it proved again in 2011. There's lots of sweet oak on show, but the fruit and tannins are there to support it, with attractive herbal spice, a hint of lavender and thyme and a supple, savoury finish. The wine is almost restrained by Perse's standards. 10+ years.


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