The 2005 Pontet Canet is a bruiser that’s still not anywhere near primetime. Blackcurrants, scorched earth, graphite, and saddle leather all emerge from this concentrated, powerful, structured 2005 that has an incredible amount of fruit, yet no shortage of ripe tannin, extract, and length. It needs another 4-5 years (or more) to hit maturity, but it’s an incredible wine that’s going to reward patience. 97+
Tasted at the Pontet-Canet vertical in London, the 2005 Château Pontet-Canet has long been one of the stars of the vintage and this might well be the best of over a dozen showings of this wine. However, do not expect ostentation on the nose. This is 2005 and like many wines of this vintage, even with considerable decanting, it remained broody and introspective on the nose, as if it is checking you out and seeing if you are worthy. Once you have been accepted, then it swings the doors open to reveal gorgeous scents of blackberry, briary and cassis fruit, perhaps a little more sous-bois than I have noticed compared to previous bottles. The palate is medium-bodied, but dense and structured—certainly a more masculine Pontet-Canet built for long-term ageing. Yet it retains marvelous freshness and vitality all the way through to the pencil-lead, quite saline finish. I suspect that the 2009 Pontet-Canet is more approachable than the 2005, so heeding Robert Parker's sage advice, afford this up to ten years in your cellar and then reap the rewards of patience. (NM)
Warm, fleshy and inviting, featuring a gush of blackberry, fig and boysenberry compote flavors that are both primal and approachable, with light anise, sweet tobacco and ganache notes filling in behind. Shows a serious, deeply buried iron and cedar spine, as the fruit is just pumping forth now. (JM, Web-2018)
Here is a rich and powerful wine that shows off the ripeness of the vintage without losing its varietal and territorial ways. Deep, keenly defined curranty Cabernet Sauvignon fruit sits at its heart while hints of cigar box, briar and forest-floor keep it very much in the Pauillac fold. Its rounded entry is soon followed plenty of gripping tannins, and, while structured for keeping, it conveys a wonderful impression of fruity volume even now. *Three Stars*
Richy fruity blackcurrant nose, exuberant and pure. Very rich but not too dense, with vibrant fruit, formidable but overly chewy tannins. This has power and force, and a textured, layered finish. Very long. (SB)
Good full ruby-red. Complex, enticing aromas of black raspberry, licorice, minerals, bitter chocolate, lead pencil and pungent cedar; just this side of exotic. Wonderfully silky, sweet and thick, with a powerful minerality framing the currant, graphite and spice flavors. This boasts superb inner-mouth energy and great length, with the full, ripe tannins totally enrobed by the wine's mid-palate richness. (ST)
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