Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 2016: An elegant Pauillac
Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 2016 is a 2nd Classified growth in the Pauillac appellation. The vines are, on average, 35 years old. This 89 hectare vineyard is planted on gravel from the Garonne and clay. The wine is matured in barrels (50% are new) for 18 months. Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 2016 is a blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 21% Merlot and 4% Cabernet Franc.
Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 2016 is very elegant. It is exceptionally powerful and profound. This wine uses the most appealing and distinct characteristic from each grape. Cabernet Franc brings elegance, Cabernet Sauvignon brings complexity and balance, and Merlot brings fruitiness. Its exceptional potential for aging allows it to be consumed from 2053-2058.
Wine Advocate-Parker :
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.