Unquestionably one of the gems in the vintage is the 2008 Pontet-Canet, which reminds me of the 2005 with its concentrated, deep, powerful style. Beautiful dark fruits, graphite, obvious minerality, and classic Pauillac lead pencil notes all emerge from this still youthful, full-bodied, and pure 2008 that’s 4-5 years away from maturity and will keep for 30+ years. Hats off to Alfred Tesseron for another awesome wine that ranks up with the crème de la crème of the vintage.
A candidate for the wine of the vintage, Pontet Canet’s 2008 boasts an opaque purple color as well as copious aromas of sweet blueberries, blackberries and black currant fruit intertwined with lead pencil shavings, subtle barbecue smoke and a hint of forest floor. Full-bodied, with fabulous richness, texture and tremendous freshness, this first-growth-like effort is more developed than the uber-powerful 2010. Give it 5-8 years of cellaring and drink it over the following three decades. Bravo! Drink through 2046. (RP)
Oh, I love this! This is Pauillac distilled, flirting on the edge of ripeness with brambly cassis and dark chocolate. This is just the right mix of open and closed for me, layered and confident but not overdone. It has feathery, well brushed tannins, and firm, generous black fruits. A great Pauillac which is just starting to rev its engine. Again, it's not as concentrated and long-living as in the ripest vintages, but it's a real success with decades ahead of it. Drinking Window 2018-2036. (JA)
Smooth, with dense tannins hidden behind the ripe, pure fruit, this important wine shows class and an impeccable balance of fruit and tannin. Rich as well as structured, this is a beautiful wine. *Top Wines of 2011, Cellar Selection* (RV)
The minerality and floral character to this is really impressive with lots of bark, currant and dried rose character. Full body, chewy yet polished tannins and a mouthwatering finish. Made from biodynamcially grown grapes. Drink or hold.
Deep ruby-red. Knockout nose combines black cherry, lavender, potpourri spices and graphite minerality; high-toned and slightly liqueur-like. Then dense, seamless and vibrant in the mouth, with firm acidity giving outstanding energy to the dark fruit, floral and mineral flavors. Really spreads out on the back end and stays a while. Brilliantly delineated, complex wine with superb cut and penetration. (ST)
A meeting by chance with the 2008 Pontet-Canet prior to a small tasting of South African wines reminded me what a lovely wine this is. There is plenty of black fruit on the nose laced with graphite. The cedar component is less prominent than the previous bottled tasting. The palate is medium-bodied, a little drier and more austere than recent vintages, yet clearly well balanced with a surfeit of freshness on the slightly herbaceous finish. Drinking perfectly now, this will give another two decades of drinking pleasure. Tasted at a merchant in London. (NM)
Quite dense, but pure and fresh, with the core of fig, damson plum and mulled cherry fruit already well-defined, and the back end of rounded loam and roasted cedar grip fully integrated. The finish is long and powerful. (JM)
Lovely beetroot aromas with chalky tannins and vivid but integrated acidity. Superb fruit power which is satisfying and complete but retains a sense of classic restraint and savouryness. Such a lovely wine, this. Every element is spot on. 18/20 points. (RH)
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