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Gloria 2011 Revisited

Every genuine wine connoisseur is drawn to Chateau Gloria for its unclassified and enigmatic character. The excellent quality of Chateau Gloria's wine has been said to surpass even the more prestigious class growths in St. Julien, making it especially appealing to the most knowledgeable wine lovers. The 2011 bottle has an understated, age-worthy claret character with a luxurious cassis note and a secondary bouquet of pencil shavings, herbs, and a cigar box on the nose. While it may lack the expected floral dimension of outstanding wines, it has a slightly saline taste on entry and is backward with even more structure than in 2013. However, its tannins are well-blended, making it a suitable wine to pair with food. The palate is well-balanced, and the wine is loaded with Asian spices and black pepper that gain consistent support. After uncorking it, it may take 30 minutes to experience the wine's aroma.

Henri Martin, a cooper by trade, took over property ownership in 1942. He had an unwavering passion and dedication for winemaking, which led him to purchase vineyards from classed growth properties such as Gruaud-Larose, Talbot, Lagrange, and Léoville-Barton, thus expanding his influence across the appellation. In 1982, he fulfilled his lifetime ambition of owning a Grand Cru Classé property by purchasing Château St-Pierre. Today, this property is operated by his son-in-law Jean-Louis Triaud. The wine produced at the estate is a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot. It is aged in a combination of large and small oak barrels, with 50% being new barrels. The vines at the estate are ancient, which is a testament to Henri Martin's foresight.

One of my esteemed tasting teachers on the MW course, Tim Atkins, has given a resounding 94 to the Gloria 2011 wine. GG also awarded a commendable 92 and noted on the bottle that the wine has a dark hue tinged with crimson. The highly young nose reveals racy, ageing, and roasted coffee accents. On the palate, this wine has a wonderful stuffing, a full, rich flavour, and generous aromas. Although the fruit is beginning to show, the oak is still very upfront. These high scores from reputable critics are a testament to the quality and appeal of this wine. Other scores include: 

95 points Wine Enthusiast

This is a powerful wine—its concentrated tannins contrast its underlying juicy fruit. It is a flavorful medley of prunes, dark plums, and blackberries, and the finish is marked with juiciness. (4/2012). Edited. 

92 points Wine Spectator

 Mouthfilling and bold, it is a fun, rustic style with chewy plum, fig and blackberry backed by a very briary finish. (4/2012). Edited. 

91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 This estate continues to go from strength to strength. Another sleeper of the vintage, 2011, is excellent, possibly outstanding. Abundant aromas of cassis, forest floor, tobacco leaf and a vague hint of oak follow its dense ruby/purple colour. Ripe for the vintage with excellent texture, a medium to full-bodied mouthfeel, and a delicious, savoury, broad appeal. This wine should be drunk well for at least a decade. (4/2012). Edited. 


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