91-94/100 Andrew Caillard MW. Deep colour. Intense dark cherry/cassis/confit aromas with some praline/ violet/ herb notes. Sweet concentrated dark cherry/ praline/ vanilla, juicy elderberry characters, pronounced firm dense al dente tannins. Substantial wine with plenty of richness/ paneforte notes. Finishes firm and chocolaty.
88-90/100 Robert Parker Jr. More approachable (it tips the scales at 13.2% alcohol), the 2011 Alter Ego de Palmer is composed of 48% Merlot, 37% Cabernet Sauvignon and a whopping 15% Petit Verdot. Despite all of the latter varietal, the wine is velvety textured, pure and impressively endowed with a lovely fragrance. It should drink beautifully for 10-15+ years.
17/20 Julia Harding MW, Jancis Robinson. 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.
17.5/20 Steven Spurrier, Decanter. Lovely perfumed and floral aromas. Beautiful structure elegance, purity and definition and charm to come later. Drink 2015-2025.
On Bordeaux’s Left Bank, near the southern end of the Haut-Médoc, lies Margaux, one of the most celebrated villages in the world of wine. Margaux is home to Château Margaux, the revered first-growth property, as well as 20 more Grand Cru Classé estates ranked in the 1855 classification of Bordeaux. The acclaimed wine of Margaux benefits from the diverse soil types in the appellation.
In general, Margaux has a very thin layer of topsoil, and the very best vineyards, above the Gironde River, have gravelly soils that encourage deep root growth and allow for good drainage. Because of the variations in soil, Margaux wines can range from delicately flavoured to highly concentrated, from medium- to full-bodied. Yet all Margaux wines share a fragrant bouquet, silky texture and remarkable balance. Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in the wines of Margaux, as it does throughout the Left Bank, with Merlot and Cabernet Franc used in small percentages for blending. Because of their excellent aging potential, the best Margaux wines are prized by collectors.