The 2001 is an amazing vintage that has inched forwards over the past 20 years, still muscular although always more elegant in its tannic frame than the 2000 vintage before it. I served it out of magnum, and if wines of the year are about emotions, this definitely deserves to be among them. I was given this bottle back in 2011 when I won the Prix Baron Philippe de Rotshchild for my first book Bordeaux Legends, and I have kept it safely at home ever since. Honestly I should probably have waited another decade, as it was still young, but I had something special to celebrate, good friends coming over, and it seemed like the right moment. Definitely needs time in a carafe, but as it opened up, the creamy blackberry and cassis fruits began to show the traditional Mouton welcome, and coffee and woodsmoke curled out of the glass alongside grilled cedar and liqourice root. Patrick Léon technical director at the time.
A blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc, the opaque purple-colored, chunky 2001 Mouton-Rothschild does not possess the finesse and stature often achieved by this first-growth. It offers a tell-tale cassis-scented nose, and a monolithic, medium to full-bodied style with relatively high, austere tannin in the finish (a characteristics I also noticed in cask). A dry, angular, backward effort for the vintage, it should be forgotten for at least a decade. Let’s hope the fruit continues to expand and sweeten, but that’s no sure thing. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2025+.
Glows with health. Muted on the nose – a bit thick and dull – Mouton? Heavy and foot-dragging. Lots of dense tannins – pretty dry finish. There are other wines that will give more pleasure for a fraction of the cost. Pretty inky finish.
The 2001 Mouton Rothschild, a blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc from low yields of 28 hectoliters per hectare, was quite closed and nearly impenetrable when I tasted it in 2003. It exhibits a dense ruby/purple color and a hint of new saddle leather intermixed with espresso, black currant liqueur, and Asian spices. The wine is dense on the attack, but excruciatingly tannic and backward, with medium to full body and a certain austerity/angularity in the finish. As I indicated last year, this wine needs to flesh out for it to merit a higher score. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2035.
The 2001 Mouton is a blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot, and 2% Cabernet Franc produced from small yields of 28 hectoliters per hectare (66% of the production made it into the wine). The entire Cabernet Sauvignon crop was harvested between October 8-10. While the 2001 does not possess the charm or finesse of the 1999, or the massive power and body of the virtually perfect 2000, it possesses forward, evolved aromatics consisting of espresso, creme de cassis, Asian spice, licorice, and toasty oak. Low acid and high tannin result in an austere finish. It will need to flesh out to justify a 93 or better score. For now, it is dominated by its Cabernet Sauvignon. Additional fat should emerge as the wine evolves in the barrel. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2025