2011 Château de Pibarnon Bandol

SKU #1269107 93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 More approachable, yet still with classic Mourvedre character, the 2011 Bandol (same blend/elevage as the 2010) offers ample blackberry, raspberry, underbrush, allspice and assorted floral nuances to go with a medium to full-bodied, balanced and seamless profile on the palate. Polished and already delicious, yet with fine tannin and solid concentration, it will continue to thrill for 10-15 years. These are classic Bandols that should not be missed! Run by the Saint-Victor family since 1975, Chateau Pibarnon lies in the northern part of the appellation and consists of steep, terraced slopes and unique blue marl and limestone soils. The wines are gorgeous and offer classic examples of the appellation. (JD)  (2/2014)

93 points Wine Enthusiast

 This is a firmly structured wine that balances tautness and minerality with ripe berry and plum flavors. There is remarkable power and potential in this solid wine. (RV)  (3/2014)

92 points Wine Spectator

 A polished, ripe, flattering style, particularly for Bandol, with flavors of plum, cassis and cherry preserves gliding along, carried by red licorice and singed cinnamon notes. Lingering whiffs of black tea and warm fruitcake emerge on the finish. (JM)  (10/2015)

K&L Notes

Chateau de Pibarnon is an extraordinary terroir seated some 300 meters above the village of Cadière d'Azur in a natural amphitheater. The soil is high in calcair (limestone) and loaded with microfossils making it distinctively unique from its neighbors. The 2011 vintage was rich and powerful. Showing the "brass knuckles in a velvet glove" character often associated with Bandol. This wine has all the core qualities for long term aging. From wine writer John Gilman: "According to Eric de Saint-Victor, the 2011 vintage in Bandol is quite similar in style to his first vintage at Pibarnon all the way back in 1989. However, to note how climate change has affected the region over the last couple of decades, I did observe that the 2011 Pibarnon comes in at fourteen percent alcohol, whereas the 1989 was only 12.5 percent! In any case, this is a very good wine in the making, offering up a deep, ripe and youthful bouquet of cassis, dark soil tones, a bit of animal, cigar smoke, tree bark and a hint of nutty oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and nicely balanced, with a rock solid core of fruit, fine-grained tannins and impressive length and grip on the focused and still quite primary finish. It will be interesting to follow the evolution of the 2011 Pibarnon and see if it will start to show some of the same breed of the 2012 Cuvée Henri-Catherine as it blossoms with bottle age. 2021-2050. 91+ points." (View from the Cellar)

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Staff Image By: Keith Mabry | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/1/2016 | Send Email
The range of depth and flavors the 2011 Bandol rouge offers is spectacular. The tannins are velvety, the fruit black and sauvage. Notes of herbs, grilled meats. This is as pure an expression as you could hope.

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- Also called Monastrell and Mataro, Mourvèdre is most famous for the ruby-hued wines of Provence's Bandol region, known for their spicy, gamey, blackberry character, though the grape is grown throughout Provence and the Southern Rhône. Thought to have originated in Spain, it is second only to Grenache in vine acres, with the best examples found in Rioja, Alicante and Penedès.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.


- Provence encompasses the southeastern portion of France that borders the Mediterranean. The largest appellation in the region is the Cotes de Provence that spans 49,600 acres of land in and around Marseilles. Thirteen different varietals are grown in this appellation with the most important grapes being Carignan, Cinsault, Grenache, and Mouvedre. While much of the production is dry rose, there are many more serious wines being made from the area. Some of the most important smaller appellations within Provence include Bandol, Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence, and Coteaux Varois.
Alcohol Content (%): 14