Les Tourelles de Longueville Pauillac 2012
The vineyard of Pichon Longueville Baron extends over the exquisite land of Garonne gravel to the south of the appellation on the high plateau which is a transition between the commune of Pauillac and that of Saint-Julien. Planted with vines since the end of the 17th century, it achieved almost instant renown. Produced under the leadership of Jacques de Pichon, the Baron of Longueville, the wines follow in the footsteps of those of Latour at the start of the 18th century. Classified as a Second Cru in 1855, the property was divided in favour of a succession and the vinified wines separately from 1860 : Raoul, the only surviving son of the Baron Joseph, therefore takes the head of the current Pichon Longueville Baron, often nicknamed « Pichon Baron »,whilst his daughter Virginie, the wife of the count of Lalande, received the other part of the property, hence the addition : « Comtesse de Lalande ». The dwelling itself, inspired by the Château d'Azay le Rideau, was built in 1851 by Raoul. The domaine belonged to the Pichon family until 1933 when it was then sold to the Bouteiller family. It was managed by their descendants for the next fifty years and it was a Sleeping Beauty which the company AXA Millésimes purchased in 1987. A significant renovation programme of the château, the wine cellars and the technical installations of Pichon-Longueville followed. Cabernet Sauvignon reigns indisputably in the vineyard of Pichon Baron, carefully managed by the team of Jean-René Matignon, the domaine's technical director. Total destemming is done though manual harvesting. This property's wines are nowadays considered amongst the most renowned of Pauillac. Les Tourelles de Longueville, formerly the second wine, has become a separate cru. The second wine, made of young vines, is nowadays called Les Griffons.
Les Tourelles de Longueville expresses all the characteristics of its big brother. Coming from a vineyard alongside that of the Château Latour, it is characterised by a rare finesse and elegance. Perfectly balanced, it unfurls marvellous aromas of blackcurrant. It is delicious when young but has the potential to be aged for several years.
Grape Varieties 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot
Award and rating
Wine Enthusiast 91-93 points
*Barrel Sample* There is a fine depth of flavor here, with solid tannins as well as ripe fruit. This second wine of Château Pichon Longueville is packed with the vintage's hallmark of perfumed black-currant fruit.
James Suckling 91 points
A beautiful red with chocolate, nuts and cappuccino aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, chewy and rich. Needs two or three years to soften. Triumph for the second wine of Pichon Baron for this vintage!
Vinous 91 points
The 2012 Les Tourelles de Longueville is gorgeous. Powerful and deep, with a real sense of energy and overall complexity for a second wine, the Tourelles offers tons of nuance. Graphite, sage, smoke and tobacco wrap around a core of dark fruit, while hints of lavender and rose petal add aromatic nuance on the close. The 2012 is complete and very nicely done. The blend is 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. The high presence of Merlot distinguishes Tourelles from the newly-introduced, Griffons, where Cabernet Sauvignon plays the leading role.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
In 2012, the well-known Les Tourelles de Longueville (60% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Cabernet Franc) is slightly more opaque ruby/purple, richer, fuller and more complex than the Les Griffons. Quite frankly, it doesn’t even resemble a second wine. This is a serious effort, with deep crème de cassis, charcoal and graphite notes. It is full-bodied, silky smooth, and a terrific second wine – perhaps one of the best second wines I tasted from this vintage. Drink it over the next 15 years.
Features a plummy core, lined with alder, iron and tobacco notes. Stays fresh and refined, with good length on the finish. The iron edge keeps this on the slightly austere side.