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The first punch delivered in the unofficial scrap between the two Pichons was undoubtedly delivered here by the Comtesse: what a really, truly excellent wine this is. Once again, positively fizzing with energy and excitement, this is a wine we enjoyed a great deal. A good core of sweet ripe fruit, plenty of nice round tannins and a lovely strict backbone of refreshing acidity.
The dark ruby/plum-colored 2011 Pichon Longueville, Comtesse de Lalande is an elegant, suave, medium-bodied effort with abundant black cherry and red and black currant fruit. Nearly St.-Julien-like in its texture and personality, this is a well-made, finesse-styled Pauillac to drink over the next 10-15 years. 89 points – Robert Parker (Wine Advocate #212, April 2014)
The headline is that this vintage of Pichon Lalande has the highest percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon ever: 78% accompanied by 8% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. It is aged in 60% new oak and has an IPT of 75. It has a very strict bouquet, obviously dominated by the Cabernet with notes of blackcurrant, tobacco, graphite, a hint of Christmas cake and that tincture of blood orange evident in the second wine. The palate is medium-bodied with a linear, conservative entry that expands nicely in the mouth. It has fine acidity, good tension, fine weight but it is very tightly wound, more so than usual at this nascent stage. Leaving it aside, there is a hint of Lapsong Souchang and graphite towards the finish that shows a little hardness, but that should soften by the time of bottling. A very Pauillac-like Pichon, perhaps the little brother of the 1996? Tasted twice with consistent notes.– eRobertParker.com, May 2012
[78CS/ 8M /12CF/2PV] Dense and closed to smell; rich and fleshy wine if with the vintage’s firm tannin and fresh acidity too; long and generous on the palate, with a real sweetness of flavour alongside the minerality, a mouthcoating density for the year, complex, vital, aromatic, most persistent and complete. A fine, ample Pichon Comtesse – velvety long term promise? 2024-40 [M.Schuster, Bordeaux Mar/Apr 2012]
Warm savory and tobacco leaf notes lead the way, with a cedary frame surrounding the lightly mulled plum and cherry fruit. Cassis bush and tobacco accents are embedded on the finish. Very solid, but lacks extra drive. Best from 2015 through 2027. 20,833 cases made. – James Molesworth (WineSpectator.com, March 2014)
A 2011 with blackberry, dark-chocolate and smoked-meat character. Full body, silky tannins and a long, intense finish. All about balance and polish. Very fine. Needs three to four years to soften. Try in 2017. – jamessuckling.com, Feb 2014
Coffee and dark-chocolate nose. Very toasty. Overoaked on the palate, malty, chocolate flavours dominating the fruit. Firm, compact texture but the oak overwhelms everything else at the moment. Drink: 2017-2024 – Julia Harding (jancisrobinson.com, Jan 2015)
My impression is that the 2011 Pichon Lalande will have its day, one day. For now, big, burly tannins give the 2011 a decidedly monolithic feel. To be sure, there is plenty of fruit density and power lurking in the glass, but the 2011 needs more time in bottle before it starts showing at its best. Two thousand-eleven was marked by an unusual weather pattern in which spring was quite warm and dry, but then summer was cool.
Quality 682 | Brand 992 | Economics 825 |
Quality: Above the average quality score of its peer group for the 2011 vintage, 649 Brand: Strong restaurant presence, featuring on 36 of the world's top wine lists, including Amber - Mandarin Oriental Economics: Below its peer group average price of £72 for the 2011 vintage Production: Lower production than its peer group average of 151,058 bottles
- www.wine-lister.com June 2017
Closed at the moment, presenting its tannic face rather than its fruit, and I would suggest waiting another three or four years before things soften up, or give it time in a decanter or jug. The emphasis is on the floral, cassis bud feel of Pauillac Cabernet, emphasising its austere but elegant character. As it opens, carefully sculpted blueberry and blackberry fruit appears, as does the evident finesse and juicy finish. This is high quality but without the density and sheer wow factor of the 2010. Sylvie Cazes was heading things up at this point. 2% Cabernet Franc completes the blend. 60% new oak, 40% first wine. A yield of 42hl/ha. Drinking Window 2021 - 2042
Blind tasted by Jane Anson (at Bordeaux, 19 Feb 2021)
Part of Bordeaux 2011: The top-rated wines tasted 10 years on
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