What a difference a year makes. 2014 is an opulent vintage for Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande. It contrasts strongly with the [100% Cabernet Sauvignon] wine made here in the extremely tricky 2013 vintage [though itself something of a success]. The Gods definitely favoured Pauillac in 2014 with the sort of Indian summer completely tuned to the later ripening Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. There is freshness here, the echo of the comparatively cool August, but the wonderful richness and texture to the palate and gloss to the tannins is all September sun.
The harvest was the longest the property has seen, spanning five weeks from 16 September to October 20. The hot sunny weather in this period allowed for plots to be picked at optimum maturity [without the rush seen in 2012 or especially 2013]. Undoubtedly this is the most immediately impressive vintage of Pichon Lalande since the glories of 2009 and 2010. It has echoes of both, but with fractionally less overall power perhaps. Still 2014 is a fascinating vintage here indeed. Liv-Ex analysis on the release price can be found here.
The following wines were tasted on Thursday April, 2, 2015 at Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande in their breathtaking new cellar, the tasting room overlooking Latour and the Gironde behind [not a bad view I must say].
Réserve de la Comtesse, Pauillac, 2014
Dense colour; opaque at centre; earthy purple at edge; black cherry; cassis tones; lush and very full presently on the nose; juicy almost; spices and some graphite; tighter on the palate; acidity and freshness dominate; vibrant but still needs to settle; lots of fruit. Very ood effort. [59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 41% Merlot]. Drink 2019-2028. 88-90+
Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, Grand Cru Classé, Pauillac, 2014
Deep and polished looking; vibrant at edge; saturated colour in the middle; tighter and more composed on the nose; very measured; really finely focused seam of blackcurrant fruit; some mineral; perfumed lift as it opens up in the glass; concentrated palate; blackcurrant, black cherry and dark chocolate; texture and matter here; nicely balanced; acidity and texture; length and matter. Very exciting wine here. [65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, 6% Petit Verdot]. Drink 2022-2035. 93-95+