2022 La Dame de Montrose, St Estèphe, Bordeaux

2022 La Dame de Montrose, St Estèphe, Bordeaux

Product: 20228124618
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2022 La Dame de Montrose, St Estèphe, Bordeaux

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This wine tackles the vintage head-on with a much higher proportion of Merlot in the blend. Several St Estèphe producers expressed surprise at how Merlot adapted to the challenges of 2022, allowing the variety to take centre-stage here without lapsing into over-richness. 

Merlot’s juicy, buoyant redcurrant and raspberry notes make the first impression, followed by gentle notes of savoury herb and smoky hickory wood. The wine is not overcomplicated, but it delivers the essence of the vintage with confidence and control.

Merlot 71%; Cabernet Sauvignon 23%; Petit Verdot 5%; Cabernet Franc 1%

Drink 2027 - 2042

Score: 16/20

Berry Bros. & Rudd (April 2023)

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Critics reviews

Neal Martin, Vinous92-93/100

The 2022 La Dame de Montrose represents 43% of production this year and comes from Terrace 3 glacial deposits (the Grand Vin is on Terrace 4, which has more clay). It has a clean and pure bouquet with wild strawberry, boysenberry and light marmalade notes percolating through with time. 

The palate is medium-bodied with quite a succulent entry, good depth, and a slightly powdery texture. There is much more grip on the finish compared to the 2021 last year. Excellent. 

Drink 2026 - 2040

Neal Martin, Vinous.com (April 2023)

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Antonio Galloni, Vinous92-94/100

The 2022 La Dame de Montrose is deep, pliant and rich. The intensity of this warm, very dry vintage comes through in the wine’s sheer size and ripe, dark profile. Black cherry, plum, chocolate, liquorice, spice and espresso are all amplified in this decidedly intense, concentrated La Dame. 

Qualitatively, there is little question that this could have easily been a Grand Vin in a preceding generation. The 2022 is a stunning La Dame. 

Drink 2028 - 2042

Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com (April 2023)

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Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW90-92/100

The 2022 La Dame de Montrose is a blend of 71% Merlot, 23% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, and 1% Cabernet Franc, representing about 40% of the crop this year. 

Deep garnet-purple in colour, it storms out with powerful scents of baked plums, tar, and liquorice, followed by suggestions of roses and espresso. The full-bodied palate is rich and opulent, delivering velvety tannins and a lively line, finishing long and savoury.

Drink 2025 - 2039

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, The Wine Independent (May 2023)

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Jane Anson92/100

A higher proportion of Merlot than usual in the blend is deep ruby red in colour. It opens to sandalwood, cedar, black pepper and rosemary notes alongside ripe blackberry and creme de cassis fruits. 

A lucky vineyard located next to the river at one of the widest points of the Estuary, this is impactful and confident, with the fingerprints of the vintage. 31hl/h yield. 30% new oak.

Drink 2027 - 2038

Jane Anson, JaneAnson.com (May 2023)

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Jancis Robinson MW16.5/20

71% Merlot, 23% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Petit Verdot, 1% Cabernet Franc. Cask sample. Lots of Merlot this year. Broad and spicy with red-fruit notes. Suave, round and opulent but manages some freshness as well. Surprising length with a bit of alcohol on the finish. 14.6%. 

Drink 2028 - 2038

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com (May 2023)

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Wine Advocate92-94/100

A second wine that would embarrass numerous classified growths, the 2022 La Dame de Montrose unfurls in the glass with aromas of blackberries, violets, rose petals, charcoal and loamy soil, followed by a medium to full-bodied, layered and fleshy palate of striking concentration, energy and dimension. Seamless and complete, it's a blend of 71% Merlot, 23% Cabernet Sauvignon and the balance of Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc.

William Kelley, Wine Advocate (April 2023)

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James Suckling94-95/100

Wonderful freshness and brightness to this, with currants and red berries, as well as chocolate and hints of coffee. Full and layered with round tannins and a fresh and vivid finish. Lemon rind underneath it all. It has lots of length for being mostly merlot. 

71% merlot, 23% cabernet sauvignon, 5% petit verdot, and 1% cabernet franc. 

From organically grown grapes.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com (April 2023)

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High-toned and chewy simultaneously, the bright, super fresh and delineated fruit has a bite and crystalline edges, but the tannins have a sense of fleshy texture, giving bounce. The tannins subside pretty quickly, leaving a clean, clear and fresh expression with plum, black cherry and flinty, herbal and spiced touches. 

It has a sense of fun; I like the Merlot aspects with appealing weight and terroir nuances. Elegant and pure with no harshness, a big wine with a soft touch. 1% Cabernet Franc completes the blend. Harvest 2-22 September. 3.8pH. 78 IPT. A yield of 31hl/ha.

Drink 2026 - 2038

Georgina Hindle, Decanter (April 2023)

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Jeb Dunnuck93-95/100

The second wine of Château Montrose, the 2022 La Dame De Montrose, tastes like a Grand Vin. More Merlot-dominated (71% Merlot, 23% Cabernet Sauvignon, and the rest Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc), the terrific purity in its cassis and blue fruits give way to the complex floral, forest floor, and violet aromas and flavours. Medium-bodied, balanced, and elegant, I'd be happy to drink a bottle any time over the coming 15 years.

Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com (May 2023)

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About this WINE

Château Montrose

Château Montrose

Château Montrose is part of our Spotlight on sustainability series. You can view the full range here.

Château Montrose is one of the leading wine properties of St.Estéphe, and produces some of the longest-lived wines in the Médoc. Montrose had been owned by Jean-Louis Charmolue from 1962 until 2006, when it was sold  to Martin and Olivier Bouygues, owner of the eponymously named construction firm Bouygues, is located in the east of the appellation, just north of the hamlet of Marbuzet, on a gravel knoll only 800 metres from the Gironde estuary. The proximity of the estuary ensures a microclimate that protects against frost, and the vines, which lie on deep clay-gravel soils, benefit from a south-easterly aspect.

Montrose's wine is typically a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot  and 10% Cabernet Franc and is matured in oak barriques (30% new) for 18 months.

Montrose wines are traditionally deeply coloured, austere and powerful when young, yet possess superb ageing potential, and when mature are quintessential St.Estèphe clarets. Montrose is classified as a 2ème Cru Classé.

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Saint-Estèphe is the northernmost of the most important communes of the Médoc and borders Pauillac on its southernmost border, with only a gully and stream separates it from Ch. Lafite. To the north lies the Bas-Médoc.

Saint-Estèphe is defined by the depth of its gravel, which is ubiquitous but of varying depths and occasionally very shallow, when clay predominates. This keeps the soil cooler and wetter than its counterparts so that the wines can appear fresh in lighter vintages, but superbly successful in hot, dry years. 

The best châteaux in the south of the commune have the deepest soil and the thickest gravel. Cos d'Estournel has an exceptional terroir with its vineyards being located on a south-facing ridge of gravel with excellent drainage. 

Saint-Estèphe is the least gravelly of main Médoc communes and in the north of the commune the vineyards are heavier and more clay-based leading to a rustic style of wine being produced.

The wines can appear austere in youth with a discernable ferric note at some châteaux, but the best typically display good depth of colour, pronounced acidity an tannins in youth and are exceptionally long-lived. At their best, they are the equal of almost any Bordeaux. The well-regarded St Estèphe co-operative controls the production of about half the appellation.

Recommended Châteaux
Cos (Ch. Cos d'Estournel), Ch. Montrose, Ch. Calon-Ségur, Ch. Lafon-Rochet, Ch. Les Ormes de Pez, Ch. Beau-Site, Ch. Cos Labory, Ch. Phélan-Ségur

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Merlot/Cabernet Franc

Merlot/Cabernet Franc

Merlot and Cabernet Franc are grape varieties commonly used in Bordeaux-style blends, particularly in the Bordeaux region of France. When these two grapes are blended, they can create a wine that combines the best characteristics of each variety.

Merlot is known for its smoothness, soft tannins, and ripe fruit flavours. It often contributes black cherry, plum, and chocolate flavours to the blend. The grapes are relatively easy to grow and ripen earlier than other Bordeaux varieties, making them versatile for blending.

Cabernet Franc, on the other hand, adds structure, depth, and complexity to the blend. It typically brings aromas of red fruits such as raspberry and strawberry, along with herbal notes like bell pepper and tobacco. These grapes have thinner skins and can be more challenging to cultivate, requiring specific growing conditions to reach their full potential.

When Merlot and Cabernet Franc are combined, the result is a well-balanced wine with various flavours and aromas. The blend often exhibits a Bordeaux wine's medium to full body, along with a smooth texture and moderate tannins. The specific flavour profile can vary depending on the proportions of each grape in the blend and the terroir and winemaking techniques employed.

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