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  • Julia Harding MW
Written by
  • Julia Harding MW
19 Apr 2012
 

For a wealth of tasting notes and articles related to the 2011 vintage, see our Bordeaux 2011 guide.

  • Ch D'Angludet 2011 Margaux

    Dark smudgy cherry crimson. Delicate fragrance, fresh red plum and cassis. Silky smooth already, good depth of fruit. Harmonious and fresh and fluid to the end. Well done in this vintage. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2026
    16
  • Ch Bellevue de Tayac 2011 Margaux

    Smudgy dark cherry, black core. Spicy blackberry fruit and a touch of chocolate, floral too. Then lots of vanilla on the palate – tastes more right bank than left – though the tannins are velvety. Rich and generous. Nothing skinny here though there's plenty of freshness. A fruity, harmonious whole with none of the faults of the vintage. Sweet aftertaste. (JH)
    Drink 2016- 2022
    16.5
  • Ch Brane-Cantenac 2011 Margaux

    Deep cherry red. Leafily aromatic. Lifted red-cherry fruit, almost minty/herbal. Lots of oak sweetness on the palate, dampening down that brightness of fruit. Though the brightness re-emerges on the sweet-fruited finish. Fresh and lithe and although the tannins are dry and powdery, the whole thing is refreshing on the finish. (JH)
    Drink 2016- 2026
    16.5
  • Ch Cantenac Brown 2011 Margaux

    Very dark elderberry juice colour. Dusty but fragrant with pure dark and ripe fruit, soft and juicy on the palate. Lightly chewy on the finish but the fruit just about fills out the structure. (JH)
    Drink 2018- 2028
    16
  • Ch Dauzac 2011 Margaux

    Deep dark cherry red. Some dark fruit on the nose but not very expressive yet but it's definitely ripe. Pretty dry on the palate, the tannins rather chalky and halting the flow of the wine on the finish.
    Drink 2017- 2027
    15.5
  • Ch Desmirail 2011 Margaux

    Deep black cherry colour. Ripe and figgy but also with a coaly darkness. The ripeness is the main impression. Same on the palate – lacks freshness of fruit though the tannins are smoothed. Loss of energy. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2025
    15
  • Ch Durfort-Vivens 2011 Margaux

    Deep dark black cherry. Fragrant, cedary on the nose and palate. Just ripe enough and that herbaceousness adds freshness. Tannins a bit drying on the finish. Perhaps it needs to be just a bit riper on the finish? (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2026
    15.5
  • Ch Ferrière 2011 Margaux

    Deep cherry crimson. Sweet oak spice. Some vanilla but the clean dark and cherry fruit seeps round the edges. Firm, dry but rounded and well balanced by freshness. Cool and clear and well directed and more to come even though it is not a big wine. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2028
    16.5
  • Ch Giscours 2011 Margaux

    Deepest crimson. Fragrant with cherries and a hint of violets. Rich and soft and very rounded but perhaps a little short on acidity, surprisingly. Easy going, lacks a bit of edge and energy. (JH)
    Drink 2016- 2027
    16
  • Ch La Gurgue 2011 Margaux

    Cedary dusty nose. But bright and juicy on the palate. Balanced and complete, even though the tannins are dryish. (JH)
    Drink 2016- 2024
    15.5
  • Ch D'Issan Blason d'Issan 2011 Margaux

    40% Merlot, 60% Cabernet Sauvignon. Deep cherry crimson. Fresh, graphite with pure dark fruit. Lots of lead pencil on the palate and not at all leafy. Lovely purity and very silky, elegant tannins. Aromatic. Cool and fresh and elegant. Lightish but still has lovely scented length. (JH) 13.1%
    Drink 2017- 2028
    16.5
  • Ch D'Issan 2011 Margaux

    31% Merlot, 69% Cabernet Sauvignon. Less graphite on the nose, a little darker and riper but still fragrant and pure and fresh. Smooth and elegant and fresh, pure cassis. Quite closed and dry on the mid palate, very fine tannic structure. Nice harmony and finesse. Glides across the palate. (JH) 13.23%
    Drink 2019- 2030
    17
  • Ch Kirwan 2011 Margaux

    Sweet toasty oak but equally sweet rich dark fruit on the nose. Spicy, a touch exotic. Then more stern on the palate, upright, structured but with a certain harmony. Fresh, fragrant on the mid palate, and finishes attractively dry. (JH)
    Drink 2018- 2028
    16.5
  • Ch Labégorce 2011 Margaux

    Dark, dark cherry and black core. Oak char. Ripe and floral, both red and dark fruit. Fluid but tails off a bit to a flat finish. Starts better than it finishes. Pretty drying at the very end. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2026
    15.5
  • Ch Lascombes 2011 Margaux

    Richly aromatic – cassis, vanilla, violets. Much less aromatic on the palate and the tannins, though fine grained, seem to bring it to an abrupt halt and there's a loss of freshness at the very end. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2026
    15.5
  • Ch Malescot St-Exupéry 2011 Margaux

    Elderberry juice, black core. Sweet damson fruit. Gently inviting though there's no sense of excitement. A bit lean on the palate, fresh enough but the structure overpowers the fruit so the tannins finish dry – though maybe it will gain flesh? Score assumes so. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2027
    16
  • Ch Margaux Pavillon Rouge 2011 Margaux

    Rich deep crimson. Bright aromatic cherry fruit. Full in the mouth even though the fruit is very pure. Tannins have a sort of flattened finesse, smooth but dry and carpet-like. Rounded and lots of clear fruit. Long, too, but overall lacks energy. (JH) 13%
    Drink 2017- 2030
    16.5
  • Ch Margaux 2011 Margaux

    Very small berries brought greater concentration but also had to be careful with the extraction. Deep dark crimson. Rich, dark and intense fruit on the nose. Floral note of violets too – open and expressive with plenty of fruit. Expressive on the palate – open and approachable and soft. Balanced and harmonious but almost too soft. 'Nothing sticks out', Paul Pontallier said, with a positive intention, but somehow it was a negative to me, all rather too safe and unexciting. Moderate length. (JH) 13.1%
    Drink 2018- 2035
    17.5
  • Ch Marquis de Terme 2011 Margaux

    Deep dark crimson. Spicy and rich on the nose. Ripe fresh plum and cherry. Rich, thick dense and generous. Comforting rather than energising. Just right for a cold winter night. Generous, velvety texture. Firm and just a little chewy. (JH)
    Drink 2018- 2030
    16.5
  • Ch Monbrison 2011 Margaux

    Dark cherry red. Oak spice to the fore. Vanilla and dark cherry fruit. Then unexpectedly fluid and bright on the palate. Fine, but slightly drying, tannins though quite juicy on the finish. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2028
    16.5
  • Ch Palmer Alter Ego de Palmer 2011 Margaux

    48% Merlot, 37% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Petit Verdot. Petit Verdot very aromatic (dark fruit and violets) and less structured than usual. Only second time they have included it in Alter Ego. Rich and floral and fragrant on the mid palate. Soft, deep velvety tannins. Lovely pure cherry and dark fruit, so clean and fresh. Open and fresh. Unusual to have an early vintage that is not a very ripe one (early vintages often picked early because it has been so hot). Fully ripe and yet so fresh. Dry but in a good way. Perfume and exactitude. (JH)
    Drink 2019- 2028
    17
  • Ch Palmer 2011 Margaux

    55% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon. 13% press wine. This year it was more a case of 'infusion' than extraction – to get the colour, fruit and structure without too much tannin. The free-run juice was very pure, the press wine creamy. Deep dark cherry colour. Again aromatic, less floral than the Alter Ego (which has all the Petit Verdot), graphite and dark, elegant fruit, not in the least leafy. Really mineral. Tannins are so polished and so fine though they coat the mouth with a very fine layer and add to the freshness. Cool and utterly long and clear. Tannins are very hard to describe because there is a dry finesse but also a creamy roundness that comes later in the mouth. No spicy exoticism in this vintage, plenty of classicism. (JH)
    Drink 2021- 2035
    18.5
  • Ch Prieuré-Lichine 2011 Margaux

    Dark blackish crimson. The first cedary note of the tasting! Pauillac-like on the nose. A bit wimpy on the palate compared with what I expected from the nose. Smoothed but not terribly flavourful on the palate. A bit dull but tannins are better managed than those many wines where they are too dry so it has the opportunity for greater improvement. (JH)
    Drink 2018- 2030
    16.5
  • Ch Rauzan-Gassies 2011 Margaux

    Dark greyish crimson. Sweet vanilla aroma. Then damson and cherry and a hint of cedar. Strong vanilla on the palate, tannins are a bit dry and impede the wine across the palate. Fresh enough. (JH)
    Drink 2018- 2028
    16.5
  • Ch Rauzan-Ségla 2011 Margaux

    Bright black cherry colour. Black core. Fairly closed; a tentative aroma of dark, small-berried fruit. On the palate, richly and thickly textured, quite dense. Seems very introvert now, quite savoury on the finish and showing so much better than the sample tasted in Bordeaux a few weeks ago. (Though the samples were more variable than ever this year, it seemed.) The density is more in the texture than the fruit but there is enough of the latter, and enough freshness, to achieve balance. (JH)
    Drink 2018- 2030
    16.5+
  • Ch Siran 2011 Margaux

    Deep black cherry, black core. A touch dusty but there's cassis fruit too but also something slightly herbaceous. Direct, fluid, firm but well balanced without the drying tannins of some, though the finish is a bit hard. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2028
    16
  • Ch Du Tertre 2011 Margaux

    Very dark, black core. Fresh, lightly cedary red fruit. Verging towards capsicum on the palate but not too green. Slim, fresh, lightly structured. A light touch overall and tannins well managed. (JH)
    Drink 2017- 2027
    16