The 2018 Mouton Rothschild is a blend of 86% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Merlot and 2% Cabernet Franc—there is also a splash of all the Petit Verdot they had, but it doesn’t even register in the percentage. It has 13.8% alcohol, which is relatively modest for the vintage. Deep garnet-purple colored, it straight away pops with bright, vivacious notes of crushed blackcurrants, juicy blackberries and redcurrant jelly with slowly emerging nuances of candied violets, stewed plums, licorice and black tea, plus a waft of dusty red soil. The medium-bodied palate is built like a brick house with super firm, super ripe, grainy tannins and bold freshness supporting the muscular black fruits, finishing long and savory with lingering mineral suggestions. This is so, so delicious and, due to the ripeness of tannins, approachable now. It will be difficult to keep your mitts off it for a good 5-7 years, when all those tightly tucked away nuances should begin to emerge. After that, it should improve over the course of 25 years or more and drink for 40+.
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