Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande Pauillac 2010
|France, Bordeaux, Pauillac
|Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande
With signs of new wood on the palate, this is a wine that maintains the polished feel of the wines from Pichon Lalande. It has a stronger presence of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend than in the past, making it more structured than its predecessors, with a dominance of black currant flavor. It shows the soft side of the vintage, but is also meant for aging.
Rock-solid, with a classic Pauillac profile of cassis, iron and graphite. Layers of blueberry, blackberry and boysenberry fruit cover the grip for now, but there's serious muscle for the longer haul, revealing a lingering pastis hint.--Non-blind Pichon Lalande vertical (July 2014). Best from 2020 through 2040.
The 2010 Pichon Lalande is performing extremely well and at the top of the range I predicted several years ago. A final blend dominated much more by Cabernet Sauvignon than usual (66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and the rest Petit Verdot), the wine is a tighter, more tannic and structured version of this famed Pauillac, which often tends to have more of a St-Julien-like personality than most Pauillacs. Structured, backward and tannic, yet showing a fat mid-palate that is more savory, broader and more expansive than I remember from barrel, this wine is somewhat reminiscent of the 1986, given the Cabernet Sauvignon domination of the blend. Full-bodied, impressively endowed, and less sexy and velvety than normal, this is a somewhat different style of Pichon Lalande than most readers have been used to. Whether you like it more or less will depend on your point of view, but this wine, unlike most Pichon Lalandes, needs a good 5-7 years of cellaring and should keep for 30+ years.
Good ruby-red. Sexy but youthfully restrained aromas of dark berries, black cherry, violet, licorice, graphite, herbs, bitter chocolate and menthol. Densely packed but quite firm, even a bit pinched, with a slight tart edge to its fine-grained flavors of black raspberry, licorice and fresh herbs. Juicy, nicely balanced, elegant wine with silky tannins and excellent length. But comes across as almost too polished, and a bit herbal today. This needs time in bottle to unwind.