The 2011 Côte Rôtie La Mouline is still youthful yet has the vintage’s upfront appeal, and it certainly offers loads of pleasure today. Its youthful ruby hue is followed by a full-bodied, beautifully concentrated, opulent and ethereally styled Côte Rôtie with awesome notes of black raspberries, kirsch, cured meats, exotic spice, Acacia flowers, and just hints of subtle classy oak. Medium to full-bodied, seamless, and flawlessly balanced on the palate, it needs an hour in a decanter if drinking any time soon and has another 20+ years of prime drinking. The 2011 vintage gets overlooked, as it followed 2009 and 2010, but it’s a beautiful vintage with loads to love. In addition, the wines are upfront, complex, and already approachable.
Starting out the single vineyards and bottled in February (after over four years in new oak barrels), the 2011 Cote Rotie la Mouline is as slutty, sexy and seamless as they come. Full-bodied, thrillingly concentrated and unctuous, it offers classic Mouline notes of cured meats, violets, black raspberries, espresso and hints of vanilla bean. Philippe Guigal commented that the worst thing about 2011 was the it came after 2010, and while the previous two vintages will get all of the attention, this 2011 will deliver almost as much pleasure, and do it right from the start as well. It needs 3-4 years of cellaring and will drink sensationally through 2041. One of the highlight tastings during my two weeks spent working in the northern Rhône was with Philippe and Marcel Guigal, who in this critic’s opinion, consistently fashion some of the greatest wines in the world. Looking at the 2011 Côte Rôties, which were bottled earlier this year, these are gorgeous wines that show the perfumed, sexy nature of the vintage; yet, they have more density, concentration and depth than just about every other wine from the vintage. Marcel characterized the vintage as charming and elegant, and while they’re insanely good even today, they’ll evolve gracefully and have broad drink windows. (JD)
Deep ruby. Sexy mineral- and spice-laced black raspberry, cherry compote and floral pastille aromas are complemented by notes of Asian spices, cola and smoky oak. Spicy and precise on the palate, offering vibrant, spice-accented red and dark berry and cola flavors and an undercurrent of smoky minerality. Fine-grained tannins sneak in very slowly and meld seamlessly with the energetic fruit. Clings with fantastic tenacity and focus, leaving behind vibrant spice, berry liqueur and mineral notes. (JR)
Very dense, dark and brooding in feel, with a thick coating of Turkish coffee and bittersweet ganache over the copious blackberry and fig flavors. The long finish is studded with charcoal and smoldering tobacco hints. Patience is required. Best from 2018 through 2030. *Collectibles* (JM)
Very rich nose but notably fresh palate. Much more lively than most vintages -- it does not enfold you. It energises you. 18/20 points. (JR)
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