2016 Pichon-Lalande, Pauillac (1.5L) (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1299418 97-100 points Vinous

 A deeply emotional, moving wine, the 2016 Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande is simply extraordinary. The tannins are nearly buried by the sheer intensity of the fruit, while the 100% new oak is remarkably well integrated at this stage. Dark, powerful and brooding, the 2016 possesses remarkable polish for such a big wine. The purity of the flavors is simply captivating. Scents of graphite, smoke, leather, tobacco and menthol soar from the glass, enhancing a core of deep, plush, dark fruit. All the elements fuse together in a wine of nearly unparalleled beauty. Although not inexpensive, Pichon-Lalande is arguably the single finest relative value in ageworthy wine in Bordeaux right now. Readers should do whatever they can to pick up the 2016. It is without question one of the wines of the vintage and potentially a legendary wine in the making. (AG)  (4/2017)

98 points Decanter

 Beautiful mix of power and restraint that you can almost reach out and touch. The extraction is so silky that the effect is a wine that seems endless, suspended above your palate, caressing it and teasing you to find the tannins that are very much hidden. There are some rich coffee seams that fill out on the mid-palate with cassis and ripe blackberry notes, whipped together with violets and peonies. The juicy, mouthwatering quality just keeps on coming. The blend is 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc from yields around 40hl/ha and with an IPT of 82, 10% higher than in 2010 but you simply can't tell. This is clearly going to age and age. One of the wines of the vintage, and I am ready to be seduced. (JA)  (4/2017)

96-98 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2016 Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande is a blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc (compare that to the 2010 that had 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, for example--that should give you some pointers). The alcohol level is 13.32% and a pH of 3.76. I tasted from a new oak barrel and the final blend will include around 60% new wood and 40% one year old, which is something I took into account. It has a very succinct bouquet, one that is almost understated at first, gradually unfolding with blackberry, cedar and graphite scents, in the vein of say the 1986 or 1996 Pichon Lalande of the past. The palate is very well balanced and what I appreciate here is that it is still as much identifiable as Pichon Lalande as it is a Pauillac and a 2016. There is that touch of roundness imparted by the Merlot, even though the Cabernet dominates the blend, surely the terroir sculpting the wine. It gently builds in intensity, maintaining freshness, a gentle but insistent grip towards the finish and a very long aftertaste. This is probably just a notch up on the outstanding 2015 Pichon-Lalande, a Rolls Royce with a purring engine. (NM)  (4/2017)

96-98 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Barrel Sample* Dense tannins and dark fruits are just a part of this wine's complex character. It is ripe, full of blackberries, yet solid, with a structure that balances the fruit. It should age extremely well; be ready be prepared to hold this for 15 years or more. (RV)  (4/2017)

95-98 points Wine Spectator

 Light savory and tobacco notes peek out from the core, but a ball of cassis and blackberry fruit is still coiled up with the strong iron spine. This is to be expected. Very pure, with a long finish. Risk-free cellaring. (JM)  (4/2017)

96-97 points James Suckling

 Linear and racy with ultra-fine tannins and a gorgeous center palate. Full-bodied, tight and so polished. The classicism and beauty are exceptional. Love the texture. Better than 2015?  (4/2017)

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Price: $329.99

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Additional Information:

Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the M├ędoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

France

- 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.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

- View our bestselling Bordeaux.
Specific Appellation:

Pauillac

- Pauillac is probably the most famous village in Bordeaux. Located between St. Julien and St. Estephe, it has more of the top ranked chateau than the other four appellations of the Haut Medoc. This area has three of the five premier cru classe wineries: Lafite Rothschild, Latour, and Mouton Rothschild. There are two of the top second-growths (Pichon Lalande and Pichon Baron) as well as several outstanding fourth and fifth-growth chateaux including Lynch Bages. Because of the gravely soils and great drainage, Pauillac has the ideal conditions to grow great Cabernet Sauvignon. The wines from this village are some of the longest-lived in Bordeaux.