Chateau-Pichon-Longueville-Baron Pauillac 2010
Planted to 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot, the 2nd Growth estate of Pichon-Baron, has vines which average 30+ years. The property consistently produces top flight wines, and is often referred to as a 'super-second' performing well above its official pedigree. Located across from Chateau Latour and Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, the vineyard is superbly situated on gravelly soil with a full southerly exposure, and much of the vineyard is adjacent to that of Chateau Latour. AXA smarlty hired Jean-Michel Cazes of Lynch-Bages to oversee the vineyard and winemaking in the early 1980s through 2000 which initiated a quality renaissance that continues today.
Wine EnthusiastThis is quintessential Pauillac, a great wine with its Cabernet proudly at the fore. It ranks with the 2009 and, with its tannins, is sure to age longer than that vintage. Solidly structured, powerful and dense, with fruit promised for the future, it succeeds with its weight and great concentration.
Wine AdvocateAdministrator Christian Seeley thinks the 2010 is the greatest Pichon Longueville Baron he has ever made, equaling some of the estate's colossal wines from vintages such as 1989 and 1990. It was certainly showing well when I stopped by the chateau in January. Opaque purple, with loads of charcoal, licorice, incense and some exotic Asian spices along with abundant cassis liqueur, blackberry and hints of roasted coffee and spring flowers, it is full-bodied and opulent, with relatively high tannins, but they have sweetened up considerably and seem less aggressive than they did from barrel. The oak is clearly pushed to the background by the wine's wealth of fruit, glycerin and full-bodied texture. This sensational Pichon Longueville Baron needs 5-6 years of cellaring, and should keep 30+ years.
Wine JournalA blend of 79% Cabernet Sauvignon and 21% Merlot, 13.7% alcohol with a pH of 3.7 and total acidity of 3.3gms/L that will be raised in 80% new oak (the remainder one year old). This has a refined, much more understated nose than the 2009 that grabbed you by the lapels. It opens beautifully with aeration, blackberry, a touch of cassis, cedar and graphite, but a little gentler than other Pauillac 2010s at this early juncture. The palate is full-bodied with very fine tannins, good acidity, like the 2009, a Pauillac imbued with great symmetry and focus, very elegant and refined towards the finish that for once reminds me of the Pichon over the road. Very persistent and very Ã¢â‚¬Å"classicÃ¢â‚¬Â towards the finish. Excellent. Drink 2015-2040+ Tasted March 2011.
James SucklingThis has wonderful purity of fruit with currants, blackberries and licorice on the nose and palate. Full body, with velvety yet poished tannins and a long, long finish. Roses and flowers at the end. Tar too! Reminds me of the 1990 PB.
Wine SpectatorSolidly built, with a roasted edge to the steeped fig, blackberry and black currant flavors, quickly followed by brambly tannins and notes of bay leaf and espresso. Stays dark and tarry through the finish, with superb drive and verve. Best from 2017 through 2030.