Tasting Notes for Saint Stephen

(302 notes on 226 wines)

1 - 50 of 302 Sort order
Red
2009 Château Hourtin-Ducasse Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
10/15/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
This is surprisingly good from magnum ten years out. Soft and evolved but with light tertiary Bordeaux notes. Yum.
Red
2003 Château Branaire-Ducru St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
8/27/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
93 points
No notes but from memory, delicious on this night.
Red
7/24/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
93 points
Love the Dungeon.

Didn't take notes but really liked this impromptu on a Tuesday night with stuffed shells and meatballs. Unless you like 'em really old, drink up.
Red
6/1/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
87 points
Second to last bottle, sad that this is losing its stuffing.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
3/9/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
90 points
Well bred and very nice but somewhat tired. Doesn't feel like there's a ton of tread left on these tires.
1 person found this helpful Comments (1)
Red
2003 Clos Fourtet St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
2/9/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
94 points
Such a classy wine. Broad, black fruit and smoky chocolate with full mouthfeel but not flabby.
Red
1/31/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
90 points
Very fragrant upon opening, this fades rather quickly. This is a very nice bottle, somewhat past its prime but still really nice, especially since I owned the case since release.
Red
2003 Château Lascombes Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
1/15/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
Really pretty well resolved, especially for often oaky Lascombes. Delicious with sous vide chicken thighs baby.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2000 Clos du Marquis St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
1/2/2019 - Saint Stephen wrote:
87 points
Owned and well stored since release. From memory, this was a nice medium-bodied wine, fully resolved, without much stuffing. Pleasant wine but felt a bit like butter scraped over too much bread...
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
2000 Château Pipeau St. Émilion Grand Cru Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
11/4/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
The bottle was tired. Like mile 22 of a trail marathon tired. Still an OK drink but past its prime. Just pulled this out of long-term storage and had the nostalgic recollection of the Joe Bag of Donuts who rung me up some 15 years ago when I bought this bottle - he said it was 'good vittles' - love that.
Red
2000 Le Defi de Fontenil Fronsac Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
7/25/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
93 points
I bought exactly one bottle of Le Defi 15 or so years ago and have held it ever since. Why does this make it difficult to open such a bottle? Alas. This is very good wine. It is bolder than I expected. I politely disagree with the two most recent reviewers in that I find this to have copious Right Bank characteristics. Bountiful red fruit, well resolved tannin, a bit of the typical tertiary Bordeaux flavors but not much. This is great now and I doubt it will improve from here - that said, it sure feels like it's full of stuffing and will last for a long time. Cheers.
White
5/30/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
92 points
Fantastic confluence of sweetness, acidity, lovely fruit, and Oxford commas.
Red
5/27/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
93 points
Eleven did a very nice job of describing this wine in his 5/18/18 review. I found myself nodding in agreement as I read through it. Right on.
4 people found this helpful Comment
Red
1996 Château Cos d'Estournel St. Estèphe Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
5/15/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
94 points
50th birthday, albeit mid-week semi-celebration. Beautiful wine. Very resolved, pretty. Medium bodied, given the fact that it is St. Estephe one can almost call this light bodied. Smoke, cedar wood, dark berries, a little spice. Here's to another 50. Life is good.
3 people found this helpful Comment
Red
4/14/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
93 points
Really nice bottle. Soft, resolved, medium bodied. Shows more on the palate than on the nose. Smooth as a David Gilmour double bend. You know, the kind where he bends the minor third up to the major fourth and then the major fifth over a descending minor key chord progression? And you're thinking oh David Gilmour that's such a tasty lick how did you get so very tasty? That's this wine on this night.
Red
2012 Château Haut-Bergey Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
3/25/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
86 points
Meh.
Red
2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
3/21/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
93 points
Last of these - was really good. All smoky and woody.
White
3/8/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
88 points
This bottle was very ... OK.
1 person found this helpful Comment
White
2/17/2018 - Saint Stephen wrote:
86 points
From memory, a pretty but slightly tired Kab that could have used a little more structure/acidity. Still, nice.
Red
12/26/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
Christmas 2017. In order to avoid having to drink the homemade wine with my beef tenderloin, I commando-decanted this in the basement workshop. It was a good plan.
White - Sparkling
11/2/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
To celebrate submission of 3 college applications!...
Red
2003 Château Giscours Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
10/30/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
87 points
I don't know, this was just sort of average. Flattish, not showing much, but not in a shut-down sort of way.
Red
2003 Château Branaire-Ducru St. Julien Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
8/19/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
When I popped the perfectly-flush cork I nearly went Number Three. Settle down Beavis. Ultimately this was a really nice wine that came through as slightly more dilute than I would have expected - red fruit, leather and tobacco, copper. Not sure I see lots of additional complexity developing - I would think this should be consumed in the next 5-10 years.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
8/12/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
All in all sort of a disappointing night with this wine - one skanky bottle and one good-not-great bottle. I get high toned red fruits, iodine, Band-Aid, and it's really nice but there's some structure missing. I usually like wines a little older but this seemed tired, like butter scraped over too much bread.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
8/12/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
flawed
Oh dear God this was undrinkable. I'm awful with 'flaw descriptors' so I'll just say this tasted like rancid expired cherry cough syrup. Luckily I had a spare, but crap - that turns a $60 bottle into a $120 bottle...
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2001 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
8/5/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
93 points
Delicious smoky, flinty, rocky, mature, dark fruits. Right on.
Red
2000 Château du Tertre Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
7/29/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
90 points
This was soft and pretty, like a junior varsity cheerleader that eats too many carbs.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
3/4/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
88 points
An old guy who has owned this since release. A good wine from a meh vintage. Mature - I disagree with reviews that say to sit on this wine - hey, it's an austere vintage, don't confuse that with immature wine. But that's just me. One guy talking. Move along now. Nothing to see here. Also, a tip of the hat to the guy who says this wine goes best with sausage. While I love sausage as much as the next guy, I can't help but think that's like saying that shirt looks good ON YOU or I've always hated Ovation guitars but yours sounds great.
Red
2/3/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
92 points
Can't believe it's been 10 years since I drank the first of this 6-pack. The decade has been good to this wine. What was backwards and brooding is now medium purple-red and very fragrant, with mostly red fruits, raw beef, and a healthy dose of my wife's floral arrangements. I would think drinking in the next 5-10 years would be in order.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
2001 Château Sociando-Mallet Haut-Médoc Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
1/1/2017 - Saint Stephen wrote:
87 points
Competent but not giving much on this night.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
1996 Château Clerc Milon Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
12/31/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
92 points
Lovely, elegant. Fairly typical although I didn't get a lot of that cedar/pencil note. I disagree with those saying that this needs more time - to my palate it is pretty well resolved and drinking great. I'm sure it will hold up for years to come but I see this as a mature, medium bodied Left Banker that is good to go.
Red
12/19/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
88 points
This will CURE what ails you.
Red
12/9/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
Even with a pedestrian bottle, there is something special about buying wine, laying it down and opening it 15 years later. The Circle of Life, baby. Anyway, this was actually quite good. Red fruit, leather, Band Aid, pencil and whatnot. Judging by the three computer screens currently in front of my eyes I estimate that this wine weighs in at least the 14% ABV on the label...
Red
2000 Château du Tertre Margaux Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
12/2/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
Delicious, resolved, and agreeable.
Red
11/18/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
90 points
This was really nice with an assortment of filet, salt crusted baked potato, and Milk Street boiled Asian chicken. Medium bodied, slightly spicy, red fruits, inviting nose and palate. Don't think to hard. Made a sleepover of six 13 year old girls tolerable. Don't discount that.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
10/11/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
92 points
Lovely and fragrant on our 19th wedding anniversary.
Red
9/10/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
92 points
Just great - seriously, I could get used to this type of high end Beau as my go-to medium bodied red. Who needs Burgundy?!? <ducks>
Red
6/22/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
Opened on a vacation Tuesday just because. I can't guarantee the early provenance of this bottle. My best impression of the wine was my first impression, I suppose this is not a particularly good sign. The early nose was great - all the classic aged Left Bank notes were there. But with time it became more subdued, and never thrilled on the palate. Still a very nice bottle of wine but nothing Earth-shattering.

The star of the night by the way was the best bowl of onion soup I've even made or eaten. Perhaps the trick was the half cup of 2004 Suduiraut I added early on. This only partially compensated for the 4-0 thrashing that Leo Messi and Argentina put on the US this night...
2 people found this helpful Comment
Red
6/11/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
88 points
Owned and stored since release, served with Man v Food portion of roast chicken (i.e. a whole chicken per person - go big or go home). It's a nice wine with some class but I can't get past the semi-dominant menthol/eucalyptus component. I got this same note (even moreso) recently with the 2000 VT. Some sweet pit fruit, a little spice, a little spirity.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
5/13/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
92 points
Right on. Red fruit, leather and spice. Acidity props it up more than tannin. No rough edges here. Didn't get much funky horse notes, which may or may not please you.
1 person found this helpful Comment
Red
5/7/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
Really good. Increasingly, I find myself pulling bottles with this flavor profile. What am I going to do with my cellar full of Bordeaux??
White
4/14/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
Delicious today. Crisp, lightly acidic, green apple, lemon, slight minerality, slight salinity. For whatever reason this really hit the spot on this 'rooster in a hen house' night.
Red
2012 Château Haut-Bergey Pessac-Léognan Red Bordeaux Blend (view label images)
Pretty closed down.
White
3/11/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
84 points
Honestly there isn't much 'there' there. The nose is very muted and in the mouth it's sort of nondescript and dilute. There's a sense that this is a quality wine but it's sort of a big nothingburger.
Red
2/14/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
86 points
Wow, do I get to be the only one who has posted a review on this wine?? I'm tempted to score it 99 points and cause a meltdown in global wine markets as the Chinese compete to pour money into mediocre New England Cab Franc... But I shan't.

Purchased on a late-2014 anniversary weekend in Connecticut wine country from a winery strangely named for one of my favorite folk singers. Actually, we had a great time visiting. The wine is nice - I get red fruits, slight green pepper, slight vanilla, and good structural balance from this medium-weight wine. Happy Valentine's Day.
Red
2/14/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
92 points
From memory, a very nice mature Bordeaux with beautiful fragrant nose but slightly underwhelming performance in the mouth. Did I just write that?
White
2/6/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
90 points
Not my usual thing but this was nice and interesting. Oily, peachy, melony, a little bit tart but not a lightweight.
Red
2/5/2016 - Saint Stephen wrote:
91 points
Very pretty. Red fruits, creamy vanilla, structure provided by plenty of acid and some tannin..
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