Profile of Pichon-Lalande Winery

Pichon-Lalande Winery, Bordeaux, France

The Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande estate, alongside the illustrious Château Latour, dominates the southern part of the famous wine appellation of Pauillac with the architectural splendour of their fairy tale châteaux. Pauillac is the star of the Médoc region, the blockbuster. The great names of Lafite and Mouton Rothschild are found here, and yet Pichon-Lalande has more than held its own against such prestigious wineries. It produces some of the most elegant and profound wine in the area, a testament to the dedication of the families who have owned the Château over the centuries.

Pichon-Lalande and its twin brother Pichon-Longueville (known previously as Pichon Baron) formed a single estate until 1860. Pichon-Lalande was built in the 1840’s and was owned by three sisters and their brother Raoul. He built the twin property Pichon-Longueville in 1851. It was only after Raoul's death in 1860 that Virginie, one of the sisters, decided that her property should be separated and so Pichon-Lalande became a single entity. Her niece Elisabeth inherited the property in 1882 and kept control until 1926. As with all of the grand estates in the Médoc, the Château would outlive several owners before coming under the stewardship of the passionate May-Eliane. She and her husband Hervé, a couple of amazing energy, put all their efforts into restoring the Château and promoting the wine as a super second to rival the finest Bordeaux estates.

In 2006, Lalande came under the control of the exclusive Champagne house Roederer, much to the surprise of many. However, they have, to this day, continued the hard work of May-Elaine (she now owns a winery in Stellenbosch, South Africa) and it shows in the wines. Their style is defined by the high proportion of plummy Merlot, which has long been a feature of Lalande, and strays from the tradition of Cabernet Sauvignon dominated left bank wines. We cannot imagine a more wonderful property to visit, with its grandiose mansion and views across the vines towards the estuary of the Gironde. The main cellar is worth a visit in its own right, its columns cased in wood-panelling, with modern paintings and sculptures decorating the entrance. Finally the sweet little glass museum is an interesting addition to the tour. A wine-lovers paradise indeed!

Wines Produced

Château Pichon-Lalande (Grand Vin) 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc, 8% Petit Verdot, 18 months in 50% new oak barrels
Réserve de la Comtesse (Second wine of the property) 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc, 8% Petit Verdot, 18 months in 25% new oak barrels. Less concentration and power than the first wine, more fruit forward.

Winery Facts & Figures

AOC: Pauillac
Classification: Second Growth
Founded: 1646
Owner: Champagne house - Louis Roederer
Estate Manager: Gildas d'Ollone
Winemakers: Jacques Boissenot and Hubert de Boüard (consultant wine-makers)
Area under Vine: 84 ha vineyards (some vineyards in the neighbouring appellation of St-Julien)
Oak: French Barriques
Age of Vines: 40 years+, some vines date back to the 1930’s
Grape Varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
Production: 450,000 bottles

More Information:

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