Sitting next to my former colleague, Pierre Antoine Rovani, at one of the tastings, he commented that he didn't like the striking green note in the aromatics of this wine, which I didn't detect at all, and a subsequent bottle at another tasting did not reveal it either. I do think there is a hint of bay leaf and a meatiness to it. In short, I find this to be a spectacular Pichon Lalande. Dense purple in color, with loads of coffee, mocha, creme de cassis, and chocolate notes, this is a somewhat unusual blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, and a whooping 10% Petit Verdot, with a little bit of Cabernet Franc. The Petit Verdot certainly gives the wine more of a tapenade, floral note, which I think can be interpreted by some as herbal. This is a rich, opulent, stunning Pichon Lalande that is beginning to drink beautifully, yet should continue to improve for at least another 10-15 years and last 30 or more years. Drink 2020-2050.
A blend of 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Petit Verdot, the 2000 Pichon Lalande is deep garnet-brick in color. It rolls out of the glass with easy-breezy scents of potpourri, dried cherries, fruit cake, and star anise, with wafts of sandalwood and crushed rocks. The medium-bodied palate is in a sweet-spot with loads of intermingled dried berries, floral, and exotic spice notes framed by soft, powdery tannins and plenty of freshness, finishing long and fragrant.
Very, very dark crimson. Scented. Lead pencil. Smooth - not a rough edge in sight. Very well done! Low key compared to Longueville Baron, but very good. Super-smooth and suave. Date tasted 20th Jan 05.
The 2000 Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande is spectacular, and certainly a noteworthy rival to the 1996, 1995, and even the extraordinary 1982. A blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot, and the rest Cabernet Franc, this effort has a dense saturated purple color, a singular/distinctive yet possibly controversial aromatic smorgasbord existing of creme de cassis, vanilla, and violets, but also tapenade and tree bark. No doubt the Petit Verdot has imparted a certain almost olive-like component to the wine's aromatic profile. In the mouth, it is a wine of extraordinary density, opulence, great presence, and richness. As the 2000 sits in the glass, notes of lavender and melted licorice emerge along with the distinctive tapenade aromas interwoven with creme de cassis, espresso roast, and cedar. The wine is full-bodied, with extraordinary purity and a tremendous texture. I suspect this wine will be relatively approachable young but evolve effortlessly. This is a dramatic, almost flamboyant style that is not classic Pauillac in one sense, but a classic wine. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2025.
A dramatic effort, the 2000 is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 6% Cabernet Franc, and a whopping 10% Petit Verdot. Only 40% of the harvest made it into the grand vin. Its dense purple color is followed by fabulous aromas of creme de cassis intermixed with roasted espresso, violets, and toast. It has a superb entry on the palate, full body, an opulent texture, silky tannin, and a finish that lasts for nearly a minute. This stunning wine will provide unreal drinking early on, but age for three decades. Bravo! Anticipated maturity: 2005-2025.
A formidable effort, Pichon Lalande is one of the superstars of the vintage. The blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot (from vines planted in 1932), and 6% Cabernet Franc has resulted in a spectacularly complex, rich wine. The 2000 offers an intensely spicy, blackberry, cassis, and smoky-scented perfume with hints of espresso, barbecue spice, and cedar. Enormously rich on the attack, with some smokiness, superb purity, high but sweet, ripe tannin. Powerful for this estate, yet with perfect harmony and purity, it will be drinkable between 2004-2030. Bravo!