A wine with spices, meat, and very ripe fruit on the nose, with hints of dried flowers. Full bodied, and deeply layered, with loads of fruit and spices. Long and decadent, very complex.
Full, saturated red-ruby. Knockout nose combines redcurrant, tropical chocolate, leather, woodsmoke and nutty oak with exotic chocolate mint and coffee liqueur; still manages to retain floral lift even in this beastly vintage. Then wonderfully fat, sweet and full, even if it comes across as almost heavy following the ineffable 2005 and 2004 examples. But "relatively inelegant" for Margaux still suggests a degree of refinement that few chateaux can match in the greatest vintages. A hugely rich and dense wine that finishes with elevated but ripe tannins and great length, with a subtle suggestion of dry spices. Pontallier says the terroir will take over in 20 years, "like with the '82." Splendid. (ST)
This may be from the exceptional vintage of 2003, but Château Margaux remains true to form. First and foremost, it is a refined, elegant wine, with complex layers of flavors. But, yes, the hot summer is there the dense, dry tannins, but somehow they seem to float through the wine rather than sitting heavily in the middle. Acidity and freshness come to finish, giving the wine a delicious lift. (RV)
This shows the heat of the vintage, revealing a hint of torrefaction amid the coffee, tobacco, currant and blackberry aromas, and a decidedly singed plum skin edge along the core of blackberry and black currant flavors. The tannins are fine-grained, the acidity evident and the finish long and beguiling. Great terroirs always let the vintage speak while being able to handle extremes: This is exhibit A. Drink now through 2035. (JM, Web Only-2014)
Tasted blind as a vintage comparison at the Valandraud vertical, the 2003 Margaux is fully mature on the nose. There is ample fruit here, well defined for the vintage with blackberry and cedar, this bottle demonstrating a subtle fungal character that I have not discerned in previous bottles. There are faint scents of rust iron piping that develop with further aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with slightly dry tannin, offering more fruit than the 2003 Valandraud it was paired with: feisty black pepper and allspice finish with a decent aftertaste. There might be better bottles than this, even so, there is probably not another Margaux that touches this First Growth. I see no harm in broaching bottles now and over the next ten years. (NM)
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