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The call of faraway lands. As mysterious and intriguing as a lone adventurer returning from a solitary sail, Cos d’Estournel is slow to reveal itself. Little by little, it evokes stories of distant places, market stalls brimming with unfamiliar fruits, spices and wares, village festivities warmed by the joy of revelers and the setting sun, and sumptuous visions of ladies and their voluptuous curves. A myriad of scents, colors and tastes appeals to the senses. The Grand Vin of Cos d’Estournel is both demure and deliberately sensuous, a fascinating and elegant nectar.
The vineyard of Cos spreads around the château on 91 hectares.The Cabernet Sauvignon vines (60% of the vineyard) find the soil of their choice in the thin layers of gravely soil situated on the top and on the southern slopes of the hill. On the other hand, the Merlot vines (40% of the vineyard) excel on the eastern slopes and on the slopes where the Saint-Estephe limestone bed shows on the surface.
The percentage of Cabernet and Merlot varies from one vintage to another according to the year weather conditions, benefiting successively to the one or the other. Plantation is extremely dense (8000 to 10000 vines per hectare) and the average age of the vineyard is high (35 years old on the average) in order to enable the roots to extend excessively and to obtain a very slender yield per vine that will create the « Grand Goût »
Each vine grower is in charge of 45 000 vines on which they have got to undertake various labours every year. These cultural tasks are for most of them done manually. The harvest is of course manually picked too. And it is by hand that the grapes, once collected in special wooden baskets, will be strictly selected.
Bordeaux: After four miserable vintages came the hot vintage of 1975 which put Bordeaux wines briefly into the limelight once again. The unsettled temperature in September turned into good weather for the harvest. Grapes were high in sugar content, but for many reds especially Cabernet Sauvignon based ones were lacking of phenolic ripeness. This yielded masculine and even aggressive reds with austere and even hard tannins.
Graves and Pomerol wines have proved to be the most delicious from this year. La Mission Haut-Brion and Lafleur-Pétrus stand out as the best ones, with Trotanoy just after them.Pétrus has proven to be the very exceptional with more aggressive and full-bodied style than usually. The Lafite-Rothschild at the reasonable price of 300 euro is the first seventies Lafite that gives a promise of improvement. On the other hand Haut-Brion considered very good has proven to be a slight disappointment.
For dry whites this was outstanding and Sauternes an excellent vintage. The best Sauternes experiences have been Yquem, Coutet, Gilette and Suduiraut.