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 Vintage1990 Label 1 of 143 
ProducerChâteau Montrose (web)
VarietyRed Bordeaux Blend
AppellationSt. Estèphe

Drinking Windows and Values
Drinking window: Drink between 2007 and 2032 (based on 89 user opinions)
Wine Market Journal quarterly auction price: See Montrose on the Wine Market Journal.

Community Tasting History

Community Tasting Notes (average 96.5 pts. and median of 97 pts. in 358 notes) - hiding notes with no text

 Tasted by dharrison93 on 7/3/2015 & rated 98 points: Drank with friends at a local restaurant after a brief decant.
Fantastic juice! Dark ruby/garnet without a hint of sediment, this wine is all dark fruit, berries and a hint of mocha. plush in the mouth with a long, long finish. My tablemates scored it similarly and agreed further improvement through bottle age is unlikely.
If a date, this was a 30 year old Latina beauty who pays the bill then takes you home and uses you for sex, much to your immense okeasure and total satisfaction. (355 views)
 Tasted by johnh1001 on 5/24/2015 & rated 96 points: Another outstanding bottle. This wine, while amazing, really is a beast and needs plenty of time. (1477 views)
 Tasted by MikeATL on 5/9/2015 & rated 97 points: Brisket, Bordeaux, and Rhones: Stunning, and the first great bottle of the 1990 I've had after a number of disappointments. It shows a little of the fresh, dry hay I always seem to find in the 1990, but not the overwhelming brett that is too common. The red-leaning fruit has toned down with age, revealing more nuance, and savory leather and earth have joined the mix. (1564 views)
 Tasted by LWI on 5/3/2015 & rated 99 points: 31 Vintages of Château Montrose: 1928-2010; 5/2/2015-5/3/2015: Big, clear and sweet dark berry fruit, even more structured than the ’89. Again, no brett. Explosive finish with kaleidoscopic tastes. Bright future – will get even better. One of my best bottles.. (1717 views)
 Tasted by Lord Rayas on 3/24/2015 & rated 97 points: great as usual but didn't quite hit the heights of some other bottles. grassy notes a little too overpowering. (2608 views)
 Tasted by William Kelley on 3/15/2015 & rated 98 points: The 1990 Montrose is a profound, monumental wine, bursting from the glass after a few hours in the decanter with glorious notes of sweet black fruit, leather, cigar ash and hot bricks. On the palate the wine is stunningly broad and deep, with beautiful, layered structure, fresh tangy acids and an endless finish. This is very similar to the superb 1989 Montrose, which I drink quite regularly, but a step up in intensity, volume and breadth—with none of the torrefied notes of some of the other top 1990s such as Haut Brion, La Mission, Lynch Bages etc. Yet while the 1990 Montrose is a massive wine, its balance is unerring and its sense of proportion perfect. Very, very fine, and entering an attractive phase as the wine's serious tannic structure melts away somewhat. (2298 views)
 Tasted by AllRed on 2/11/2015 & rated 97 points: R&D sent a list of possible mags for dinner, and I deferred to Domino. After some back & forth discussion with R&D the three settled on this but didn't tell me what it was until it came time to open it. To be honest, I have always preferred the '89, but perhaps tonight would be different.

From magnum, decanted shortly before it was served with dinner and followed over the course of a couple of hours. Lovely crimson color with an initial bouquet of tobacco, green/herbal qualities, black currants and barnyard with a scorched earth/burned straw overtone. Medium- to full-bodied with softened tannins and flavors of red fruit, sous bois, barnyard, spice and tobacco. The wine is balanced across the entire palate and lingers on the finish for well over a minute. Over time, floral qualities emerged- violets primarily- and the underlying earthiness stood out more as well. More black fruits than red, with amazing weight, balance and length on the palate and finish. Easily the finest example of this wine I have tasted, and the first time this has, for me, hinted at true greatness. 97-98 pts. (2511 views)
 Tasted by Jeffrey Silver on 2/8/2015 & rated 98 points: Wow. Yes simply WOW. This wine is so powerful. It needed 3-4hrs of decanting. I was a clear favorite among our diners. It smells like dark chocolate with cream carmel. The fruit is so big with strawberries, blueberry, and saddle leather. It will linger on for 90 or so min. It will live another 25yrs easily. I have more but want to pick many many more. (2182 views)
 Tasted by Rezy13 on 2/1/2015 & rated 95 points: Super Bowl 2015 (Roswell, GA): Dense chocolate core with garnet rim; earth, tart, currant, cherry, orange oil, tobacco, some Brett; fleshy, silky initially, luxurious, grainy tannin comes in later, strong mid-palate, funk, medicinal; very good but not a wine I could drink a ton of because of the lower acid; voted WOTN. (2252 views)
 Tasted by Francois Le Mouel on 1/24/2015 & rated 95 points: Looks 10 years older. Animal-like/barnyard, tobacco and spices on the nose. Very fragrant and very long. Beautiful wine. (1988 views)
 Tasted by Anonymous on 12/30/2014 & rated 96 points: From magnum: sexy, fleshy with well integrated tannins. Yummy red cherry fruit. Great finish. While this wine is drinking well now with air, it will last another 20 years. (2251 views)
 Tasted by tinybubbles on 12/21/2014 & rated 95 points: Coal dust, asphalt, blackberry, rotting leaves, and a hint of marigold on the nose. At moments, surprisingly bright given its dark nature. Flavors of ripe plum, tar, boysenberry, tobacco, and eventually black pepper provide plenty to chew on. Firm tannic presence still here but not at all offensive given the depth of flavors. An excellent but not exceptional experience, this was not one of the best bottles that I have had. (2032 views)
 Tasted by Mark81 on 12/19/2014 & rated 92 points: SS's birthday celebration at Garibaldi. Dark red, close to purple, really looking very young. Deep, rich and intense bouquet of currants, blackberries, tobacco, leather, and over time, this became like a signature Pauillac with cigar box, lots of tobacco, cedar, smoke and pencil lead! There was the sweat, animal notes over an extended period, but nothing unpleasant. There was lovely intensity of fruit on the palate, tannins were round and silky with great structure and complexity. Dark fruits, sweet berries, lots of leather and scorched earth. This was a very balanced wine. Not quite 100 points for me, but brilliant. (1991 views)
 Tasted by thomaskeil on 12/14/2014 & rated 93 points: Double decanted to take btl to friends' house for lamb shank dinner (approx 2 hrs of air). Showing brown on edges of core of deep violet red. Was emerging at serving and could have used more time. No Brett/horse on this bottle. My experience was very close to recent notes of others. Complex fruit, lasting secondary flavors, great structure despite resolving tannins. Good match with lamb. For me this lacked an emotive factor which could be partially the result of high expectations. Seems to be in a very good place right now. (2035 views)
 Tasted by svdheijden on 12/3/2014 & rated 97 points: Drank together with Montrose 1989 and Cos d'Estournel 1990. Shining as always right from the start. No funky barnyard and brett this time. Full bodied, complex, ripe, dense and concentrated. Very good balance. Huge tannins, but nicely integrated. Perfect balance between sweetness and acidity. Obviously approaching its peak, but it will probably stay there for ages. This is a faultless, utterly attractive, complete, majestic wine and performing every time its cork is pulled. Clearly beating the 1990 Cos, but now on par with its 1989 sibling. (2240 views)
 Tasted by KenK on 12/1/2014 & rated 99 points: Birthday Dinner at Wildfire
A real "wow" wine. Huge ripe black fruit dominated aromas with a hint of earthy appeal. Lush creamy ripe black cherry/blackberry dominate. Very fulled bodied with a rich velvety mouth coating texture. Long dense finish. Comes across much younger and merlot dominated as so silky and sexy. 99 points. Thanks KJ (1894 views)
 Tasted by jlgnml on 12/1/2014 & rated 100 points: KenK's BDay (Wildfire Chicago il): Perfect. Out of magnum, super powerful on the palate, great long term finish, very clean and bright color. (2115 views)
 Tasted by mclanew on 11/30/2014 & rated 98 points: Spectacular, full bodied, opulent and majestic wine at its peak. Black fruits, flowers, leather and minerals. Terrific complexity and class. Long long finish. (1646 views)
 Tasted by eluebchow on 11/27/2014 & rated 97 points: Thanksgiving Wines (Chapel Hill, NC): A truly stellar wine; the nose is simply mesmerizing, with a melange of blackberries, plums, currants and earth; the palate is very silky, with concentrated red fruits underscored by well-integrated savory notes of roasted meat and tobacco; the finish just keeps sailing along, leaving you contemplating and yearning for the next sip; In its prime right now, but this will continue to be a special bottle for many more years (1719 views)
 Tasted by BernieMSY on 11/26/2014 & rated 95 points: Deep, dark and mysterious. Inky black, decent nose. Barnyard and leather nearly overwhelm the entire flavor profile. Ultimately, delicious. (1400 views)
 Tasted by Jeff Leve on 10/31/2014 & rated 99 points: It's always a crap shoot with this wine. There are bottles with such overwhelming notes of horse and barnyard, they are not fun to drink. And then, there are the clean bottles that let you know you are in Bordeaux at the top level. This bottle was clean. The intensity of the aromatics, the incredible weight, density and concentration, coupled with ripe, regal, soft tannins and a seamless finish are well worth the price of admission. Still young, but showing its stuff, this is a thrill to taste today and if well stored, your grand children can probably enjoy a bottle in 2090! (2802 views)
 Tasted by Capitolhack on 10/26/2014 & rated 95 points: Outstanding wine that has held up very well after 24 years. Cork was barely wet. Leather notes predominate at the nose, with light berry fruits and a leather finish. The sommelier said after tasting, "It tastes like I chewed a belt". (428 views)
 Tasted by pablopilot on 10/22/2014 & rated 99 points: I give it a 99 because I don't believe in perfection. But it's pretty perfect, to me. The smokiness, the glycerine, the sweetness and power without a hint of being cloying or overbearing... It's a wow wine in every sense. (2198 views)
 Tasted by rocknroller on 10/11/2014 & rated 98 points: Big Bordeaux VIII: 1990 Retrospective with Montrose, LMHB, PB, LP, and more (Rocknroller's (Kevin & Vicki's Place)): Very dark red-purple color with no bricking. Slow-O for 3 hrs and decanted for 75 minutes; drank 1+ glass over 3 hours. WOW, what a nose, incredibly powerful, focused and pure. The fruit is out of this word, a cornucopia of ripe black fruits, cassis, boysenberry, sweet mulberry, floral, leather, fresh tobacco, and a subtle earthiness that evolves gradually in the glass. The palate is a lush, sexy, hedonistic treasure trove of texture and opulent black fruit, pencil lead, tobacco, and minerals that is deeply earthy and slightly savory. The tannins are velvety and tangy and the finish is very, very long, 120s plus. This is a glass that is almost impossible to put down and it screams perfect balance. Seductive and intense, but oh so elegant and suave. This has a very long life ahead of it, and I NEED to revisit it down the road 5 years or so. My and group WOTN in a landslide with 9 of 10 first place votes. 97+ to 98 points. (2524 views)
 Tasted by galewskj on 10/11/2014 & rated 97 points: Big Bordeaux VIII : 1990 (Kevin's house): Per the host, slow-O for 3 hrs and decanted for 75 minutes; drank 1+ glass over less than an hour, because it was that good. If you want to talk about being well-integrated, this is textbook. Very well-integrated, perfect balance, and I don't use that term lightly. There is perfect balance and elegance here. Fruit is still delicious. Big in the right ways, nimble in the right ways. My favorite from a strong lineup, and frankly it was a pleasant surprise. (2415 views)
 Only displaying the 25 most recent notes - click to see all notes for this wine...

Professional 'Channels'
By John Gilman
View From the Cellar, Jul/Aug 2012, Issue #40, The Annual Champagne and Sparkling Wine Report
(Château Montrose) Login and sign up and see review text.
By Jancis Robinson, MW
JancisRobinson.com (9/17/2009)
(Ch Montrose St-Estèphe Red) Subscribe to see review text.
By Jancis Robinson, MW
JancisRobinson.com (9/20/2005)
(Ch Montrose St-Estèphe Red) Subscribe to see review text.
By Stephen Tanzer
Vinous, July/August 2002, IWC Issue #103
(Chateau Montrose Saint Estephe) Subscribe to see review text.
By Jancis Robinson, MW
JancisRobinson.com (6/28/2002)
(Ch Montrose St-Estèphe Red) Subscribe to see review text.
By John Kapon
Vintage Tastings, Hong Kong Killers (2/5/2010)
(Montrose) The second to last wine of the night would ultimately become the group’s wine of the night. The nose was open and exotic, full of blackberry fruit in its nose. The palate was rich and saucy, with coffee grind and earth flavors and a meaty and dense personality. It was a Dr. Jekyll bottle of 1990 Montrose, which can often be green and unpleasant, but this was obviously one of the ‘good’ bottles that received so many accolades (95).  95 points
By Richard Jennings
RJonWine.com (3/22/2008)
(Château Montrose) Great tart currant, roast beef and horseradish nose; lovely, still youthful, tart cassis, plum palate with firm tannins; medium finish 93+ pts.  93 points
By Richard Jennings
RJonWine.com (6/29/2007)
(Château Montrose) Dark garnet red color; truffle, dried cherry and dried mushroom nose; intriguing, plush, tart plum, tar, coffee palate, young yet; long finish 93+ pts.  93 points
By Richard Jennings
RJonWine.com (1/7/2007)
(Château Montrose) "Great!" (see what I mean about my notes?)
By John Kapon
Vintage Tastings, Paris a la Mode with Dr. Desai (9/19/2005)
(Montrose) has always been a bit of a controversial wine in my mind, never living up to my expectations. I suppose I need to curl up with a bottle for five hours, as Mr. Squires insists, one of these days; my one Achilles' heel as a wine writer is that I tend to experience many wines at once and smaller samples. I enjoy the comparison and contrast of that format most; however, I do recognize that my impressions may be more snapshots than full length videos, but I doubt that I am alone in that regard when it comes to those in the business of publishing their notes. Back to the 1990&the nose had that greenish hue with the bean but also a sweet pinch of cinnamon, and there were much more pronounced aromas of barnyard and animal, which has always been one of my issues with this wine. There were a lot of horses racing around my glass, thoroughbreds perhaps, but horses nonetheless. A touch of morning mouth did not help, and I am talking about the wine and not me. The nose needed a lot of coaxing to shed its animal skin and don a mineral one. Once that skin was shed, I slowly started to become more infatuated with the wine and found more mocha, coffee and piercing minerals within. The horsy quality faded back in and out; it was a wine that almost needed to be swirled a few minutes before each sip and evaluation. The richness of fruit was clearly superior though, but its animal components kept distracting me. The plump, rich and fat fruit combined with its elegant and long acidity won me over a bit, but I still have my doubts about this 'modern-day legend'  95 points
By John Kapon
Vintage Tastings, A Mega 1990 Bordeaux Tasting with Clive (3/21/2005)
(Montrose) was never a wine that blew me away, a wine that I always felt was a trip to the farm. This bottle was no different with its horsy, stinky nose, earthy and dirty as it always has been. On the palate, the wine was great, with gorgeous texture and concentration, I will admit. It was oily, balanced and long, with lots of earth. The texture was amazingly concentrated, so much so that it could easily improve, but the animalistic edge to it was not a pleasant one. Clive really felt the Montrose this night, calling it .much more to my taste than the Cos . pure, harmonious, long and intense,. and gave it 19/20  94+ points
By John Kapon
Vintage Tastings, Hanging with Mr. Parker and Mr. Squires in Baltimore and D.C (2/21/2005)
(Montrose.) Eric said it was like Australia meets Bordeaux, which raised some eyebrows, but what he meant was that the Montrose was very concentrated by Bordeaux standards. The nose was a little green and stinky, as it always has been in my book. There was green, barn, horse in the barn, horse out of the barn and earth to its nose, with some cassis underneath. The palate has similar flavors, though less wild. .Interesting wine,. Wilfred said tongue in cheek. The palate was a bit herbal and horsy, although Eric loved the wine, and its texture was its major redeeming quality  92 points
NOTE: Scores and reviews are the property of View From the Cellar and JancisRobinson.com and Vinous and Vintage Tastings and RJonWine.com. (manage subscription channels)

CellarTracker Wiki Articles (login to edit | view all articles)

Château Montrose

Producer website – Read more about Chateau Montrose

This was acquired In 1778 as part of the Calon estate, by Etienne Théodore Dumoulin. After his death, his son, (also Etienne Théodore Dumoulin) cleared the vegetation and discovered the soil beneath was gravelly and suitable for the vine. Planting was completed by 1815 with good results. By 1820, Dumoulin had expanded the vineyard and built a small chateau. This vineyard has changed hands many times over the years. New equipment in 1975, and again in 1985, and a new barrel cellar helped sow the seeds for Montrose's renovation, which reached a peak in about 2000 with some excellent wines. The estate and the wines were enjoying a great reputation when, in 2006, it changed hands once more when Martin & Oliver Bouygues bought the vineyard. The vineyard is currently 65 hectares with 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. The wines go into oak, 70% new for eighteen months for the Grand Vin Chateau Montrose (typically 19,000 cases per annum).

Red Bordeaux Blend

Read about the grapes used to produce Bordeaux The variety Red Bordeaux Blend in CellarTracker implies any blend using any or all of the five traditional Bordeaux varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec. As such, this is used worldwide, whether for wines from Bordeaux, Meritages from California and Canada, some Super-Tuscan wines etc.


Vins de France (Office National Interprofessionnel des Vins ) | Pages Vins, Directory of French Winegrowers | French Wine (Wikipedia)


Bordeaux Wine Guide

Vins Bordeaux (Conseil Interprofessionnel du Vin de Bordeaux)

History of Bordeaux

History of 1855 Bordeaux Classification


Vins du Médoc (Conseil des Vins du Médoc) - Read More about the Medoc
The eight precisely defined appellations of the whole of the Médoc (from Blanquefort Brook to the north of the Bordeaux built-up area, almost to the Pointe de Grave) may claim the Médoc appellation. But there is also a specific territory in the north of the peninsula which produces exclusively wines with this appellation. In the great majority, the Médocs come from the north of the peninsula. The great individuality of this region is that the number of vines has increased more recently here than elsewhere, apart from a few isolated spots where vines have grown for many years. Today, the size of the small estate has brought about the development of a powerful co-operative movement. Four co-operatives out of five belong to the group called Unimédoc which ensures aging, bottling and marketing a large proportion of their wines.

St. Estèphe

Read more about St. Estephe and its wines Whereas the first activity recorded in Saint-Estèphe goes back as far as the Middle Bronze Age, the first vines date from the Roman Occupation. But it was the Bordeaux merchants who by aging and selling Saint-Estèphe wines themselves were largely responsible for this appellation's fame. And in the nineteenth century, noted for its prosperity, the great estates of today were created. The movement continues today with the merging of small estates.

A land of great wines, Saint-Estèphe is situated almost in the centre of the Médoc, close to the Gironde Estuary. The appellation is equidistant from Bordeaux and the Pointe de Grave.
The beds of soil are characterized by their remarkable diversity, the result of their undulating relief and excellent drainage. Quartz and well-rounded pebbles mingled with light, sandy surface soil are found everywhere, giving the wines a distinctive finesse. And the subsoil is made up of the famous Saint-Estèphe limestone, which outcrops on the west of the commune.

Thanks to ideal conditions of climate and geology, Saint-Estèphe wines are characterized by their sturdy qualities and robust constitution. Accordingly, they can be laid down for a very long time while yet preserving their youth and freshness. Distinguished by a subsoil which is more clayey than that in the other communal appellations which lie by the river, the wine here attains a distinctive individuality : a very rich tannic structure, a fine deep red colour and an exceptional backbone with aromas of great finesse.

Production conditions (Decree dated September 11, 1936):

In order to have the right to the Saint-Estèphe appellation of controlled origin, red wines must:
- come from the communes of Saint-Estèphe, "excluding any parcels in that area which are situated on recent alluvium and sand on impermeable subsoils",
- satisfy precise production conditions : grape-varieties (Cabernet-Sauvignon, Cabernet-Franc, Carmenère, Merlot Noir, Petit Verdot, Cot or Malbec), minimum of sugar (178 grammes - 6.27 oz. - per litre of must) degree (an acquired 10°5) base yield (45 hectolitres per hectare).

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