Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande Pauillac Red Bordeaux Blend 1996

$309

The 1996 Pichon-Lalande is just as awesome from bottle as it was from multiple cask tastings. For Pichon-Lalande, the percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon is atypically high. This wine normally contains 35-50% Merlot in the blend, but the 1996 is a blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot. Only 50% of the estate's production made it into the grand vin. The color is a saturated ruby/purple. The nose suggests sweet, nearly overripe Cabernet Sauvignon, with its blueberry/blackberry/cassis scents intermixed with high quality, subtle, toasty new oak. Deep and full-bodied, with fabulous concentration and a sweet, opulent texture, this wine was singing in full harmony when I tasted it in January...It possesses plenty of tannin, but the wine's overwhelming fruit richness dominates its personality. Anticipated maturity: 2004-2025. Robert Parker

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Ratings on Delectable

David T Delectable Pro

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

It’s a B-day double dip of Pichon Lalande. Following up the 89 with the 96. I Coravined this 96 about a year ago and put it back because it wasn’t ready. I still feel that way, but my trust in Coravin has been a little shaky lately. So, I figured I’d I finish it just in case the Coravin advanced it too far or to spoil as I’ve experienced in the last year. On the nose; scorched earth, spearmint, cigar, dark currants, well baked blackberries, dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, cherries, strawberries, steeped black tea, slight tarry notes, herbaceous character, soft, subtle spice, dark chocolate, black licorice, expresso grounds, cedar, used leather, dry, decayed & fresh red florals with fresh violets. The body full and putting on weight as it continues to open up. The tannins have softened & are rounder but still have big teeth. The structure, length, tension are still quite big. The balance is in a very good spot and will continue to evolve to a better place. The palate fruits are like the nose with lots of dark currants. Well baked blackberries, sweet & sour dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, cherries, strawberries, steeped black tea, slight tarry notes, scorched earth, spearmint, cigar box, herbaceous character, soft, subtle spice, dark chocolate, black licorice, expresso grounds, cedar, used leather, dry crushed rocks, dry river stones, dry, decayed & fresh red florals with fresh violets. The acidity is round & well done. The finish is big, thick, rich, long with split evenly with dark currants/earth and lasts minutes. Still needs at least 5 years plus in the bottle to really get to a sweeter spot with another 15-20 years ahead. Personally, I’ll wait 10 years to open another. Photos of; Pichon Lalande, Virginie de Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, their library cellar I’d love to spend a weekend opening bottles and their barrel room. I remember being at dinner about 8 years ago where their Director told us they had recently opened three bottles of 1897 and one was still good! Wish I’d been in line with a glass.

It’s a B-day double dip of Pichon Lalande. Following up the 89 with the 96. I Coravined this 96 about a year ago and put it back because it wasn’t ready. I still feel that way, but my trust in Coravin has been a little shaky lately. So, I figured I’d I finish it just in case the Coravin advanced it too far or to spoil as I’ve experienced in the last year. On the nose; scorched earth, spearmint, cigar, dark currants, well baked blackberries, dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, cherries, strawberries, steeped black tea, slight tarry notes, herbaceous character, soft, subtle spice, dark chocolate, black licorice, expresso grounds, cedar, used leather, dry, decayed & fresh red florals with fresh violets. The body full and putting on weight as it continues to open up. The tannins have softened & are rounder but still have big teeth. The structure, length, tension are still quite big. The balance is in a very good spot and will continue to evolve to a better place. The palate fruits are like the nose with lots of dark currants. Well baked blackberries, sweet & sour dark cherries, black plum, black raspberries, cherries, strawberries, steeped black tea, slight tarry notes, scorched earth, spearmint, cigar box, herbaceous character, soft, subtle spice, dark chocolate, black licorice, expresso grounds, cedar, used leather, dry crushed rocks, dry river stones, dry, decayed & fresh red florals with fresh violets. The acidity is round & well done. The finish is big, thick, rich, long with split evenly with dark currants/earth and lasts minutes. Still needs at least 5 years plus in the bottle to really get to a sweeter spot with another 15-20 years ahead. Personally, I’ll wait 10 years to open another. Photos of; Pichon Lalande, Virginie de Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, their library cellar I’d love to spend a weekend opening bottles and their barrel room. I remember being at dinner about 8 years ago where their Director told us they had recently opened three bottles of 1897 and one was still good! Wish I’d been in line with a glass.

9.4

David T Delectable Pro

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

It's hard to follow the 91 Palmer in the same night back to back. Especially, five years younger. Not quite a fair race. This is absolutely one of my favorite Bordeaux producers. As the 96 opens up, it's getting better and better. It's definitely a great steak wine but good one it's own as well. The 96 still needs another 5 plus years in bottle to, "be all it can be." Tannins are still a bit chewy. It's thick, heavier blackberries, black plum, dark cherries, a touch of blue fruits, cherries & strawberries, dry stems, tobacco, leather, cedar, dry lavender & fresh violets, anise, expresso roast, black earth & stones, powdery crushed limestone, burnt ambers, graphite, spice, cinnamon, clove, nice acidity, still fairly big structure, tannins, long length and a good finish that will improve with more time in the bottle.

It's hard to follow the 91 Palmer in the same night back to back. Especially, five years younger. Not quite a fair race. This is absolutely one of my favorite Bordeaux producers. As the 96 opens up, it's getting better and better. It's definitely a great steak wine but good one it's own as well. The 96 still needs another 5 plus years in bottle to, "be all it can be." Tannins are still a bit chewy. It's thick, heavier blackberries, black plum, dark cherries, a touch of blue fruits, cherries & strawberries, dry stems, tobacco, leather, cedar, dry lavender & fresh violets, anise, expresso roast, black earth & stones, powdery crushed limestone, burnt ambers, graphite, spice, cinnamon, clove, nice acidity, still fairly big structure, tannins, long length and a good finish that will improve with more time in the bottle.

9.4

Nico J. Snyman Delectable Pro

Classic, rich, intense, showing some oak, beautifully balanced though, needs some more time to really shine, but still drinking so well right now.

Classic, rich, intense, showing some oak, beautifully balanced though, needs some more time to really shine, but still drinking so well right now.

9.4

Fredrik Johansson Delectable Pro

Winemaker Staglin Family Vineyard

Singing and just hitting on all cylinders. Great dark fruits and balance. Supple. Still fresh and vibrant. LOTSA life left in this one.

Singing and just hitting on all cylinders. Great dark fruits and balance. Supple. Still fresh and vibrant. LOTSA life left in this one.

9.5

Robert Cunningham Delectable Pro

Wine Educator DeVinimus, Wine Workshop

Lovely wine. Drinking very well. Balanced.

Lovely wine. Drinking very well. Balanced.

9.2

David T Delectable Pro

Independent Sommelier/Wine Educator

Another dinner with green bell pepper. The GBP faded some over the night as the wine opened up.

Another dinner with green bell pepper. The GBP faded some over the night as the wine opened up.

9.3

Matty Wicksteed Delectable Pro

Manager The Wine Cellars

Seems to be peaking at the moment, drinking superbly! Dense concentrated black fruit with that gravelly minerality, cedar, wonderfully perfumed. Still has plenty of power in the mouth but great fruit, mouthwatering acidity and still plenty of tannin, amazing.

Seems to be peaking at the moment, drinking superbly! Dense concentrated black fruit with that gravelly minerality, cedar, wonderfully perfumed. Still has plenty of power in the mouth but great fruit, mouthwatering acidity and still plenty of tannin, amazing.

9.6

Alder Yarrow Delectable Pro

Wine Blogger Vinography

Tight graphite cherry and leather with a deep mineral core. Drinking alongside the Pichon Baron this is more linear and earthy.

Tight graphite cherry and leather with a deep mineral core. Drinking alongside the Pichon Baron this is more linear and earthy.

9.1

Kelly Hau Delectable Pro

Drank it after 4 hours open taste it through about 8 hours, super on the fruit forward side m, pretty nice.

Drank it after 4 hours open taste it through about 8 hours, super on the fruit forward side m, pretty nice.

9.0

p w Delectable Pro

didn't show terribly well but tasty

didn't show terribly well but tasty

9.0