Bordeaux has no shortage of superstar wines. Names like Château Margaux and Château Cheval Blanc are known and admired throughout the world. Despite their reputation (and price), there is an estate in the small commune of Pomerol whose reputation is even better: Château Pétrus.
Château Pétrus: What’s the deal?
Considered by many to be the best red wine in the world, Château Pétrus is the most famous and prestigious wine estate in Pomerol. Despite its infamy, the estate is shrouded in mystery and has something of a low profile. Unlike the grand estates of the Médoc, there is no great castle to mark the spot of its legendary vineyard. Instead, a modest country house serves as the closest thing to a Château Pétrus proper. The real story, of course, has nothing to do with old castles, but rather of the vineyard.
The Château Pétrus vineyard
Lying in the east of the Pomerol appellation, Château Pétrus has 11.4 hectares under vine, planted exclusively to Merlot. The vineyard is surrounded by those of some of the world’s greatest wineries, including Château Lafleur, Château Certan de May and Château La Conseillante, to name just a few. The vineyard at Château Pétrus is known for its concentration of blue clay, an iron-rich soil type that is atypical for the region and leads to wines of exceptional concentration and quality.
What makes Château Pétrus so special (and expensive)?
A bottle of Château Pétrus doesn’t come cheap: Expect to pay thousands, or tens of thousands, of euros! Nonetheless – or perhaps as a result – Château Pétrus’ wine is always in incredibly high demand. There are many reasons as to why this might be the case.
- Château Pétrus belongs to Ets JP Moueix, one of the world’s most respected wine merchants. Other vineyards in the Moueix portfolio include Pomerol estates Châteaux Trotanoy, La Fleur-Pétrus and Latour à Pomerol, as well as Napa Valley icon Dominus. That Château Pétrus is the jewel in this crown tells you all you need to know about its quality!
- The winegrowing and winemaking at Château Pétrus puts quality before all else. Vines are old, with an average age of 45 years. Here, you get low yields of highly concentrated fruit. Furthermore, fruit selection is thorough and incredibly strict, only the very best grapes make it.
- There’s not that much Château Pétrus to go around. With an annual production of no more than 30,000 bottles, demand far outstrips supply. Naturally, this leads to some of the highest prices in all of wine.
Tasting Château Pétrus wine
Perhaps the great tragedy of Château Pétrus (and fine wine generally) is that so few people will ever get to taste the wine. These wines are some of the most critically acclaimed in the world, though their scarcity and price mean that few of us will ever have the opportunity to actually drink a glass, let alone a bottle! We’ve got two vintages of Château Pétrus wine in stock. If you can afford it, by all means skip ahead, buy them and see for yourself. Otherwise, join us for a virtual tasting of Château Pétrus!
Château Pétrus 2003 is a blend of 95% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc – note that the vineyard was planted to exclusively Merlot in 2010. This is visually a deep, dark and rich wine, with wide-ranging aromas from cherry and chocolate to smoke and vanilla. On the palate, the wine is both powerful and incredibly smooth. With 95+ points from Robert Parker, this is truly one of the world’s best wines.
Château Pétrus 2002 has the same blend as the 2003, and is again outstanding. Its rich, dark colour gives way to an enchanting nose ranging from sweet fruits to coffee, olive and tobacco. Full-bodied and smooth on the palate, this is another fantastic Château Pétrus wine.
Have you ever tasted Château Pétrus? What did you think? Share your tasting notes with your fellow wine lovers below!