Mouton's vineyard was harvested between October 2-15, and the wine possesses an unexpectedly high pH of 3.85 (high for this vintage, but normal for a riper year). Made from low yields of 34 hectoliters per hectare, it achieved a natural alcohol content of 13.2%, one of the highest ever for this estate. Made from 54% of the production, the 2008 Mouton Rothchild's final blend of 83% Cabernet Sauvignon and 17% Merlot has resulted in an atypically sweeter, more direct and opulent, fleshy Mouton. Keep in mind that this cuvee, because of the high Cabernet Sauvignon content as well as the terroir, is often backward, structured, and nearly foreboding in its youth. However, I do not think the 2008 will behave in that manner.
There is plenty of tannin and exceptional density and ripeness, but the tannins are velvety, and I was amazed by how charmingly forward and fleshy this wine already is. A deep purple color, sweet aromas of creme de cassis, smoke, cedar, and an unmistakable floral component (another characteristic of the Cabernet Sauvignon in 2008) are found in this precocious, succulent Mouton that should firm up and put on more weight with aging. My score is somewhat conservative because it is hard to forget their prodigious 2006, but the 2008 will provide far more enjoyment and pleasure over the near-term than the 2006. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2035.