So smooth, this is a rich, grandiose wine. Although it is full of black currant fruits and spice flavors, the texture is most impressive. Dusty tannins are integrated with juicy fruits seamlessly. The purest fruit flavors are allied to linear tannins in a precise yet generous way. The wine is evolving beautifully, but do not drink before 2020. *Cellar Selection* (RV)
Tasted at the Pontet-Canet vertical in London, the 2011 Château Pontet Canet must constitute one of the best wines on the Left Bank, even if it does not quite live up to its stellar performance from barrel. Lucid purple in color, the bouquet leaps from the glass and yells "Pauillac" - thanks to its graphite seam interwoven through the black fruit. Over ten minutes, tobacco scents join the fray and it develops what you might call "mint fresh" aromatics. The palate is medium-bodied and remains understated on the entry, perhaps exaggerated by the exuberance of the nose. However, there is no question that this is a refined, pure and seamless Pontet-Canet with crème de cassis and cedar inter-layered on the sustained finish. Bon vin. (NM)
Château Pontet-Canet is making one of the most exciting wines in all of Bordeaux these days and their 2011 is one of the top wines to be found on the Left Bank. Jean-Michel Comme decided on using fifty percent new wood this year and feels that he may even reduce the percentage in coming vintages, as he prefers the expression of terroir that comes through at lower percentages of new wood. As many readers may already know, Château Pontet-Canet is the only major estate in all of Bordeaux to embrace biodynamique principals, and as has been seen to be the case in regions such as Burgundy, now that the vineyards have been farmed biodynamically for a while now, they are really starting to accelerate in terms of quality fruit production. Happily, there was no hail damage at Pontet-Canet this year and the decision to let the grapes ripen fully and then sort out the rot seems to have paid excellent dividends. The complex nose is deep and excellent, offering up a very pure blend of black cherries, cassis, dark soil tones, cigar smoke, a nice touch of new leather, coffee bean and a stylish framing of new wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, very pure and classically balanced, with a lovely core of fruit, firm, well-integrated tannins and excellent focus and grip on the long and classy finish. A very thoughtfully-made and impressively-successful 2011! 92+
This cuts a broad swath, with prominent notes of espresso and ganache leading to the core of crushed plum and blackberry confiture. Lush, with the ganache edge joining a loamy hint to underscore the finish. Consistent with the barrel tasting, this shows more breadth than cut in the end. (JM)
Wild violets and black fruit nose, both exuberant and classic. It is a wonderfully elegant Pauillac with superb vineyard expression. 18/20 points
Fruit seems darker and more one-dimensional, more peppery than the 2012. Very upright and dry and firm. Much better than I remember it en primeur, much more Pauillac. Dense and almost a little severe in its structure but promises much more. 17.5/20 points (JH)
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