Château des Tourelles Red Bordeaux Blend Lalande de Pomerol 2003
The vineyards at Pichon-Baron cover 73 hectares of typical gravel, and are planted with 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc. Harvesting is manual, and the fruit destemmed before fermentation in temperature-controlled stainless-steel tanks at 28°C to 30°C. Malolactic occurs in vat, after which the wine is transferred into French oak barrels (some may undergo malolactic here) for up to 18 months, using 70% new and 30% one-year old, with racking every 3 months. The grand vin is Chateau Longueville au Baron de Pichon-Longueville, Pichon-Baron to you and me, with a typical production of 24000 cases. The second wine is Les Tourelles de Longueville, introduced with the 1986 vintage, of which 12000 cases are typically produced. Les Tourelles might be regarded a groundbreaking wine by some; in early 2007 it was revealed that a proportion of the second wine, those bottles intended for the on trade (restaurants and the like, not retail sales) would be bottled under a screwcap closure, rather than the traditional cork. For a deuxième cru, even if it is only the second wine, this is a bold and admirable move indeed. The style of the Pichon-Baron is one of contrast to sibling Pichon-Lalande, which has enjoyed a very strong following for many years because of is sensual, seductive nature. Baron, on clawing back the quality necessary to rival Lalande, has demonstrated a more masculine, structured, reserved although not quite reticent style of wine more akin to Latour than Lalande, and no doubt this is in part due to the significant proportion of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend, more than can be found in the sister wine. Pichon-Baron has a special resonance with me, as I recall it as being one of the earliest bottles of classed growth claret I ever purchased, the wine in question being the 1983 vintage at a price well under ten pounds per bottle. I must confess I wasn't very impressed at the time, but enjoyed another bottle more when I tasted it over a decade later. More recent vintages, however, have shown much more character and depth. Of all the vintages from 1997 through to 2005 there isn't a real disappointment, with even the 1997 proving that there were some palatable wines made in this rather questionable year. A rather muted nose compared with Pichon-Lalande, although still showing exotic, perfumed and violet-infused black fruits with a roasted nut edge. Succulent, creamy, with firm tannins, quite well knitted together with the substance of the wine. Full, exotic, slightly brawny, but with good acidity. There is some finesse here, and overall it's a touch more exciting than young Pichon-Baron usually is. Lovely floral-tinged finish.
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Deep purple-ruby. Medium-pronounced nose of dark fruit, cream, cassis. Dry, medium acid and tannin, medium body. Cassis, oak, liquorice, cream.
Needs to be decanted for atleast one hour to open the wine up. Have had this wine on several occassions and is a very smooth and fruity wine.
External Reviews for Château des Tourelles Red Bordeaux Blend Lalande de Pomerol
Raspberry, black cherry, and flowers on the nose. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a medium finish. Slightly hollow midpalate. Second wine of Pichon-Baron. Best after 2007. -JS Wine Spectator. A Bordeaux Blend wine from Bordeaux in France. 2003 Les Tourelles de Longueville 750ml
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