Tag Archives: Chateau Pichon-Longueville

Everything’s bigger in Bordeaux (Bordeaux, France – Day Two)

How did Bordeaux become the most important wine region in the world? With 120,000 hectares it is by far the largest single viticultural area in France, and when you consider the density of planting here that results in a lot of production. It has some of the highest and lowest yields in France as well, which means you can have some of the best quality and the lowest. Bordeaux was the first region I visited in Europe back in 2010, and it amazed me the size of the area and the extent to which vineyards are planted here. In spite of the quantity of wine they produce they seem to do a pretty good job of selling it, and the reason has less to do with quality and more to do with image. Bordeaux has developed one of the strongest connections with quality in wine second only to champagne. Through the classification system that designates quality of vineyards, to the glamour of the chateaus and then to the system of selling, all combine to make bordeaux wine one of the most immediately recognisable but also mysterious. My second day was spent at two estates on the left bank; Chateau Montrose and Chateau Pichon-Longueville.

The soils of Saint-Estephe

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Chateau Pichon-Longueville – 24/07/2012

2011 Chateau Pibran (Pauillac)
Very intense purple, quite bright and spirited. Bright dark fruits, berries and cherries, slightly creamy and vanilla notes. Creamy texture, almost like wild berry yoghurt, soft but dense with good concentration.

2011 Les Tourelles de Longueville
A little denser and tighter on the nose, slightly stalkier and a little green herb element, nice bright florals and small berry notes. Fresh full and soft, dense and ripe tannins, quite savoury in fact with just a hint of vanilla oak influence. Good lines but still far too early.

2011 Baron Pichon-Longueville
Very mature, old vine elements, much more complexity, density and finesse, less expressive but this will come. Very intense but also fresh and precise. Great structure and density, the cabernet sauvignon is very refined and well balanced. Nice combination of fruit and savoury elements, well managed oak but that may change given more time in barrel.

Baron Pichon-Longueville 2010
Very floral, rosy and violets, lovely intensity of dark fruit, fairly classic Pauillac cabernet sauvignon. Bright intense fresh, quite tannic and showing a lot of barrel at the moment, balanced and structured well with a good long finish. Density and maturity in the flavours and the tannins, mouth-filling but also good acidity. Dominated by youthful tannins and oak, but will develop over the next ten years.

Baron Pichon-Longueville 2009
Fuller but softer notes, fleshier juicier fruits, less floral elements and more intense oak integration. Full dense and soft, robust and broad. Approachable and soft yet well structured, doesn’t have the same concentration and core of acidity though. Looks good now, will improve for ten years or more but won’t last as long as the 2010.

Baron Pichon-Longeuville in all it’s glory

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