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Maturity on the nose, richness, lots of jammy black fruits. Very richly textured with intense tannins. Mid-ripe black cherry and plum fruits, with a lingering white stone character, finishing dry and fresh with quite good length.
Offering up wild, exotic aromas of blackberries, cloves and Indian spices mingled with notions of rose petal, bruised orchard fruit and cherry pit that evolve rapidly in the glass, the 2021 Pontet-Canet is medium to full-bodied, ample and fleshy, with a layered mid-palate and refined tannins that assert themselves on the firm, saline finish. Always one of the Médoc's most singular, idiosyncratic wines, it will be interesting to see how it performs in bottle.
William Kelley, April 2022
The 2021 Pontet Canet is quite perfumed on the finely delineated nose of blackberry, briar and pressed iris flower, a touch of inkwell coming through with time. The palate is medium-bodied with a pinch of white pepper on the entry and gentle grip. Not as enormously deep as other vintages, as you would expect, but it displays a fine bitter edge and a graphite-infused finish. This should drink earlier than other vintages yet has the substance to mature in bottle.
Neal Martin, Vinous, May 2022
Plenty of blackberry and blueberry with wet earth and crushed stone. Some spice,tobacco and lead pencil, too. It’s full-bodied with layered tannins and brightness. Fine and chewy at the end.
James Suckling, May 2022
Purple-crimson hue. Dark, dense and rich with a brush-stroke of vanilla oak. Broad across the palate on attack then prominent tannins on the finish. Certainly, chalky, dry and chewy. Elévage should help. Awkward at present but hopefully will pull together. (JL) 13.1%
Drink 2027 – 2038
Jancisrobinson.com, May 2022
The 2021 is the most classically Pauillac Pontet-Canet I have tasted in modern times. Medium in body, with striking aromatic presence, the 2021 screams with character. Grilled herbs, incense, leather, lavender and plum open with a bit of coaxing, all framed by beams of tannin and bright, salivating acids that give the wine shape and real sense of direction. There's a bit more Petit Verdot in this year's blend, and that comes through in the wine's intensely savory profile. Aging is 50% in new wood, 35% in amphora and 15% in one year-old barrels. The 2021 was impressive all three times I tasted it.
Antonio Galloni, Vinous, May 2022
Bright berry red in colour, nuanced blackberry and loganberry with bitter black chocolate notes from the first attack. Lovely precision, good level of spice, earthy, unfussy, rose stem and blackcurrant bud. This was the third vintage with mildew pessure, but the team are now experienced, and I can attest to seeing the vines during harvest and remarking on how healthy they looked, with no-till farming helping concentration. Plenty of tannins give structure and are shot through with sinew and juice, this is an impressive wine from technical director Mathieu Bessonet, with Pauillac typicity. Harvest 24 september until 12 October. 50% new oak, 35% amphora, 15% one year barrels, 15% press (aged in the amphora).
Jane Anson, Inside Bordeaux, May 2022
Vintages like 2021 play havoc with biodynamic operations, and Justine Tesseron explained that despite the desperately rainy weather in June, and the accompanying mildew pressure, the viti-team at Pontet-Canet earned their spurs in 2021. They have built a new ‘tisanerie’ (herbal tea room in which they make their biodynamic preparations), and this has meant that there is no time delay when they need to react to inclement weather. In addition, and this was not the only time this year when the conversation turned to tractors, P-C has bought one more tractor, and they now have 15 members of staff, fully-trained as tractor operators. This might sound somewhat mundane, but when Mother Nature turns on the waterworks and you are left helpless in a soggy vineyard, you might as well pack up and go home. Pontet-Canet has proved that you can make a jaw-dropping wine in a vintage like 2021, thanks to the tea and tractors at this illustrious property! This is an all-enveloping wine that is open, expressive, perfumed and possesses a stunning colour (I never write about colour, but P-C’s was captivating). Justine said that these arresting characters emerged extremely early during fermentation. There is delicious exoticism here over a black cherry theme, and the tannins are vital, raspy and frictional, and they perfectly offset the exuberant fruit.
The 2021 Pontet-Canet is a blend of 58% Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc and 6% Petit Verdot. Deep purple-black in color, it pops from the glass with vibrant blueberries, Morello cherries, and cassis scents, plus suggestions of violets, cinnamon stick, wet rocks, and forest floor with an exotic touch of cardamom. Medium-bodied, the palate has very finely grained tannins and well-poised freshness supporting the perfumed black fruits, leading to loads of minerally sparks on the finish of this very bright and shimmery wine. Harvest started on 24 September with Merlot, followed by the Cabernets and Petit Verdot on 4 October, and finished on 12 October. The wine is to be aged in 50% new oak barrels, 35% amphorae, and 15% 1-year barrels.
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, May 2022