One of the favourite and best value second wine of the great estates is Dame de Montrose, which offers incredible complexity at a superb price. In 2016 the strength of St.Estephe and Montrose has resulted in one of the finest ever Dame de Montrose. It has been released today at £312 per case of 12 bottles, which translates as £26 a bottle. For a wine of this calibre that is a stunning offering. We thought Dame de Montrose 2016 was as good as we have tasted. In 2016 Neal Martin has awarded it 90-92 points saying, ‘This is a delightful La Dame.’ Dame de Montrose has benefited greatly under the new owners, who have undertaken a philosophy of rigorous selection. The blend in 2016 is 52% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 2% Cabernet Franc and 11% Petit Verdot in 2016: this is considerably different from the first wine.
Today’s release price is at a 5.8% increase on last year, the same euro price. This is an excellent price considering the demand placed on back vintages: collectors have recently sharpened buying on this second wine driving the price of physical vintages up. The release price is also at a discount of 19% when compared to the equal scoring Pagodes de Cos, which released for £385. A further 22% discount to the 91 point scoring 2009. Moreover, La Dame de Montrose generally gets a higher score from bottle and we can expect at least a 92 point score, we viewed it as good as the 2010, which Parker, not Martin awarded 92-94. As such we consider Dame de Montrose as a very strong buy in 2016.
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Dame de Montrose 2016, 12×75 – £312 EP
90-92 Points, Neal martin, The Wine Advocate
The 2016 La Dame de Montrose is a blend of 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 52% Merlot, 2% Cabernet Franc and 11% Petit Verdot. It is often a difficult Deuxième Vin to taste en primeur, and it often meliorates considerably during its élevage. Here, the aromatics took some time to coalesce in the glass: blackberry, graphite and a noticeable oyster shell aroma. The palate is medium-bodied with a gentle grip in the mouth, grainy in texture with very fine balance towards the finish where the quality of the vintage showed through. Doubtless those aromatics will improve and gain harmony by the time it is in bottle, and indeed, when I returned for a second visit I discerned a little more finesse and prettiness on the finish. This is a delightful La Dame. Tasted twice.
91-92 Points, James Suckling
A linear and fine rendition of Montrose’s second wine with blueberry and blackberry character. Medium to full body, firm tannins and a juicy finish. Structured. Racy.
Duhart Milon has also released this afternoon at £640 per case of 12, or £320. It has been scored 92-94 from Neal Martin and 94-95 from James Suckling. This makes it one of the finest vintages ever, with the joint highest score from Suckling. Today’s release price marks a 28% pound increase on last year. We expect this to be awarded the highest score possible from bottle, this being an excellent year in Pauillac and an excellent Duhart Milon. Martin says ‘For me, this is a step up from the 2015 and it comes recommended.’ Sucking follows this up by declaring it to be ‘One of the best in a very long time’. In 2016, Duhart is a blend of 67% Cabernet Sauvignon and 33% Merlot.
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Duhart Milon is synonymous with Lafite Rothschild in Asia, due to the fact Lafite bought the Estate in 1962, renaming it Duhart Milon Rothschild; the wines also share similar labels. Duhart Milon Rothschild is a Fourth Growth in its own right and is found in Pauillac on the western boundary of Lafite Rothschild. Its vineyards are found on the Milon hillside, very close to the Carruades plateau and shares similar terroir, combining gravel, sand and limestone. As soon as the Rothschilds made the acquisition they painstakingly rebuilt the Estate investing heavily into it, clearing all unhealthy vines and replanting them, as such the vines today have an average age of 30 years.
Duhart Milon 2016, 12×75 – £640 EP
92-94 Points, Neal martin, The Wine Advocate
The 2016 Duhart-Milon-Rothschild is a blend of 67% Cabernet Sauvignon and 33% Merlot picked between 26 September and 12 October with around 13.3% alcohol, slightly higher than in 2015 that suffered a little dilution. The bouquet is tightly wound with blackberry, cigar box and sous-bois aromas that gently unfold in the glass. This is classic, conservative Duhart-Milon. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, a crisp line of acidity, just a touch of black pepper enlivening the black fruit. Overall, this represents in some ways a return to the slightly more austere style of Duhart-Milon, yet there is perhaps now more approachability and certainly plenty of freshness. For me, this is a step up from the 2015 and it comes recommended.
94-95 Points, James Suckling
A firm and silky young red with a medium to full body and lovely chocolate, cedar and currant character. Flavorful finish. One of the best in a very long time.
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