Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse De Lalande 1995
1 or more bottles$940.01
Robert Parker96 points
James Suckling94 points
Château Pichon Longueville Lalande is one of the most important Super Seconds and this 2ème Cru Classé Pauillac estate has made tremendous strides in the last 20 years. This is largely due to the energy, drive and ambition of May-Eliane de Lenquesaing, who took over the property in 1978.
Pichon Longueville Lalande is a 75-hectare property that produces on average 36,000 cases per year. The wine is not as powerful or as tannic as some of its Pauillac neighbours and this is mainly because of its relatively high Merlot content. In the best years, it is one of the most exotic and voluptuously-scented wines of the Médoc. At least a decade of cellaring is required before the wines should be approached.
"The 1995/1996 vintages are two of the greatest back to back efforts Pichon-Lalande has ever produced, including the 1982/1983 vintages." 96 pts Robert Parker
The wine boasts a knock-out, super-charged nose of jammy black fruits, minerals, licorice, spice, and smoke. Well-endowed, with fabulously concentrated, pure flavors, a layered personality, and a chewy mid-section, this is one of the great wines of this excellent vintage.
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Low Tannin (Low Tannin)Tannic (Tannic)
Sweet (Sweet)Dry (Dry)
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- Blue Fruits
- Red Meat
Critic Scores & reviews
"What sumptuous pleasures await those who purchase either the 1996 or 1995 Pichon Lalande. It is hard to choose a favourite, although the 1995 is a smoother, more immediately sexy and accessible wine. It is an exquisite example of Pichon Lalande with the Merlot component giving the wine a coffee/chocolatey/cherry component to go along with the Cabernet Sauvignon's and Cabernet Franc's complex blackberry/cassis fruit. The wine possesses an opaque black/ruby/purple colour, and sexy, flamboyant aromatics of pain grille, black fruits, and cedar. Exquisite on the palate, this full-bodied, layered, multidimensional wine should prove to be one of the vintage's most extraordinary success stories."
"Offers a juicy, lively core of plum, cassis, and blackberry, studded with anise, violet, and singed vanilla notes. Everything pulls together seamlessly on the finish, with a well-embedded graphite spine. Sneakily long. (Non-blind Pichon Lalande vertical, July 2014.) Drink now through 2035."
Love this wine? Here's a list of other vintages we have in stock if you'd like to try them as well.
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Wine is being produced throughout France and has been done for over 2,500 years with certain Châteaux dating their history back to Roman times, around 6th Century BC. Ranking second in the world in per-capita consumption and first in total production quantity. More so than the overall quantity of wine is the quantity of truly great wines coming out of France makes the nation the envy of wine-making nations worldwide.
Two concepts pivotal to the higher end French wines, in particular, are the idea of 'terroir' and the Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC) system. Terroir refers to the way the geography, geology and climate find their way into the glass, telling a story of the origin of the wine. The AOC was set up in 1935 and has the primary goal of protecting the authenticity of the wines and the livelihoods of the producers. Appellation rules strictly define which varieties of grapes and winemaking practices are approved for classification in each of France's several hundred geographically defined appellations, which can cover entire regions, individual villages or in some cases, like in Burgundy even specific vineyards.
Classic wine regions in France include Champagne (home of Champagne), Burgundy (Pinot Noir and Chardonnay), Bordeaux (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot), Alsace (Aromatic varietals), Loire Valley (Chenin Blanc, Crémant) and the Rhône Valley (Syrah, Grenache Mourvedre)
The Bordeaux classification of 1855 is still in use, as is the Sauternes and Barsac Classification of the same year. Wines from certain regions can be bought En Primeur, which is when the wine is sold prior to it being bottled.
Bordeaux produces some of the most highly sought after and revered wines in the world. Located close to the coast, in the south-west of France the town and is divided by the Gironde River. Wines to the west of the river are referred to as left bank, and are Cabernet dominant. To the East of the river, on the right bank Merlot is the dominant grape variety. Throughout the 57 appellations, over 10,000 wine-making châteaux grow the red grapes; Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec. These are commonly blended and collectively referred to as clarets. Smaller amounts of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc is also grown in Bordeaux.
In 1855, due to the high export demands of Bordeaux wines, Emporer Napoleon III requested an official Bordeaux classification system, based on market costs of the wines at the time. The Chateaux were classified in to five ‘growths’ from first growth to fifth growth and cru Bourgois. Also in 1855 The Sauternes and Barsac classification covered the sweeter wines, with Chateau d’Yquem the only Superior First Growth, followed by Premiers Crus and Deux Deuxièmes Crus.
Home to over 650 vineyards and spanning over 4,900 hectares, Bordeaux’s Médoc wine region comprises four of the most distinguished wine villages in the area: Saint-Estephe, Saint-Julien, Pauillac, and Margaux. The peninsula of Médoc is home to coastal lagoons, sand dunes, and pine forests. It is known to have formed into a peninsula over time as the Garonne and Dordogne rivers carried in large quantities of mineral rich silt and light reflective, well drained gravel, which turned out to be perfect for harvesting red wine grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. The main aromas of the beautifully refined red wines from this area are: spices, oak, red fruit and vanilla.
The region of Médoc is divided into three areas: the Landes du Médoc, the Bas-Médoc, and the Haut-Médoc. The Landes du Médoc is located in the entire western half of the peninsula. Although there are no vineyards here, the land is still important because its pine trees protect the grape vines from the harsh cold winds blowing in from the Atlantic Ocean. The Bas-Médoc( lower-Médoc) runs downstream on the estuarine side of the peninsula. The wines produced here are usually more affordable than those produced in Haut-Médoc. Haut-Médoc (upper-Médoc) is the most well-known of the three sections. The wines produced here are some of the most expensive wines worldwide and were famously ranked in The Médoc Classification of 1855, which is to this day in use.
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About the brand Chateau Pichon-Longueville Comtesse de Lalande
For many wine lovers, at its best, Chateau Pichon Lalande is one of the best examples of Bordeaux wine from Pauillac. Sensuous textures, deep concentrated layers of ripe fruit and a perfume filled with earth, tobacco and cassis are what you’ll find in Pichon Lalande.
The first mention of what we now call Chateau Pichon Lalande discusses the creation of the vineyard by Pierre de Mazure de Rauzan. Pierre de Mazure de Rauzan is the same man responsible for forming many of what are now widely considered the top Bordeaux estates of today. One owner, Baron Joseph de Pichon Longueville succeeded his mother taking over Pichon Lalande when he was only 19. He was 90 years old when he died in 1850.
Before his death he split up the estate between his five children, becoming independent and producing two different wines very distinct in style.
After the estate was divided into the two current Pichon estates, 1925 saw Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande bought by Edouard Miailhe and Louis Miailhe. The daughter of Edouard Miailhe, May Eliane de Lencquesaing (born in 1926) later became the owner and manager of the property in 1978. She made numerous investments and improvements at Pichon Lalande, perhaps her greatest achievement being expanding the size of Chateau Pichon Lalande from 40 hectares to its current 89 hectares of vines! (Quite an accomplishment to grow a major property in the Left Bank by more than 50%.)
May-Eliane de Lencquesaing sold Pichon Lalande to the owners of Roederer Champagne in January 2007. This family-run company is managed by Frederic Rouzaud and owns several other wine estates in Bordeaux including Chateau Bernadotte, Chateau de Pez , Haut Beausejour and Chateau Reaut la Graviere. Once the purchase for Chateau Pichon Lalande was concluded, in 2008, a complete renovation of the estate took place. The wine making facilities were rebuilt and modernized. The new construction of course included work in the cellars, vat rooms and chais. The reception area, glass museum and chateau was remodeled. A targeted, replanting program for select, vineyard parcels was started. The replanting focused on making sure the best root stocks with the most potential were planted in the correct, specific soil types for each grape varietal.
On average, the vines are 45 years of age. However, they have old vines, which are now close to 90 years of age having been planted in the early 1930s. You can divide the vineyards of Pichon Lalande into 6 large blacks that are almost contiguous. You can further subdivide those blocks into a range parcels that are close to 60 in number.
The vineyard of Chateau Pichon Lalande also includes 11 hectares of vines in the St. Julien appellation that the estate is allowed to vinify as Pauillac. The grapes can be used for the Grand Vin, the second wine , or bottled as a Saint Julien. However, the majority of the time, those vines are used in both the Grand Vin and in the second wine.