A lesson in genuinely great wine, the 2005 Cos d’Estournel is a monster of a wine that delivers an incredible level of opulence and decadence while staying weightless and elegant on the palate, with no sensation of heaviness. This is what truly great wine is all about. Based on 78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, and the final 4% Cabernet Franc, this dense ruby/plum-hued Saint-Estèphe offers up a monster bouquet of blackcurrants, unsmoked tobacco, licorice, toasted bread, classy oak, and cedar pencil. While it starts out reserved and almost understated, this is a wine that blossoms with air (I drank this bottle over two days, showing best on day two). Full-bodied, powerful, and decadent on the palate, with moderate acidity, it has a wealth of silky tannins, a stacked mid-palate, and a great, great finish. It reminds me of the 2009, if not an improved 1982, or even a slightly fresher 2003. Regardless, it’s a thrilling wine in every sense, and I fear with the focus on acidity and freshness in today's wine world, we might not see this style of great wine for some time.