Cos d'Estournel's only competition among super-seconds in St. Estèphe, Montrose is a huge, hillside property that owes its greatness to draconian selectivity. Only 36% of the crop made it into this wine in 2016; in 1982, that figure would have been about double. Think about it. Grab this one. It's one of the wines of the vintage, for a comparative song.
Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2016 Montrose is a little youthfully shy to begin, but with coaxing, it unfurls to reveal the most beguiling scents of wilted roses, oolong tea, crushed rocks, wild sage, star anise and candied violets over a wonderfully pristine, well-defined core of crushed blackcurrants, black raspberries and kirsch plus wafts of pencil lead and wood smoke. The taut, muscular, medium to full-bodied palate straddles jaw-dropping intensity and finesse superbly, featuring a solid backbone of ripe tannins and giving a firm frame right through the incredibly long, exquisitely nuanced finish.