93-95/100 Andrew Caillard MW. Deep colour. Very perfumed violet/ black cherry/ plum/ vanilla toasty aromas. Buoyant sweet red cherry/ violet flavours, pronounced chalky/ graphite but fully resolved tannins, dukkha savoury oak, juicy, supple and elegant but well balanced. Lovely length. Highest quantity of tannin ever! Muscular but feminine. Beautiful physique.
94-96+/100 Robert Parker Jr. Administrator Paul Pontallier is nearly embarrassed to explain the amazing success of the 2011 Chateau Margaux, a candidate for wine of the vintage. With the harvest occurring between September 5-20, it was the smallest crop in over twenty years as yields were cut significantly by the drought. The berries were tiny. Moreover, analytically, the 2011 has a higher level of concentration as well as tannins than the 2009. A blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot and the rest Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, only 38% of the harvest made it into the grand vin. The wine offers an inky/purple color, barely noticeable sweet tannin, and a beautiful nose of creme de cassis, spring flowers and lead pencil shavings backed up by fresh acids and good overall structure. This medium to full-bodied effort possesses tremendous personality and character. It rivals what they achieved in both 2010 and 2009, which is virtually impossible to contemplate given the quality of those two vintages.
18.5/20 Steven Spurrier, Decanter. Floral cassis fruit, lovely florality and perfect texture, beautifully harmony of expression above concentrated natural tannins.
17.5/20 Julia Harding MW, Jancis Robinson. 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.