Wine Monopole

Few nights ago, we had a vertical blind-tasting of Chateau Pichon-Longueville Baron across five vintages: 1975, 1983, 1986, 1988 and 1995. The result was quite unexpected.

To begin with, let’s see Robert Parker’s rating on Pauillac


Robert Parker’s rating

Our wine dinner results


89 points



86 points

2nd Place!


94 points

3rd Place!


87 points



92 points



Parker’s rating is a fairly good presentation of the quality of each of these vintages and how most Bordeaux lovers like us think and remember about Bordeaux vintages. Therefore, for the wine of the night, almost all guests expected it to be the 1986.

But the winner is… 1988! Surprisingly, the second most favorite wine of the night was 1983! Both 1988 and 1983 were more ready and pretty much at their prime drinking window. While both wines had excellent structure and balanced palate, 1988 was more expressive and continued to evolve throughout the night with its aroma; this helped secure its place as WOTN.

While the 1986 possesses the structure and underlying fruit, it seems more restrained tonight. This wine could benefit few more years in cellar before showing its true potential.

Pretty much everybody was able to identify the 1995 and 1975. 1995 was still a bit youthful relatively as indicated by its color and tannin level. For 1975, if you are an old Bordeaux lover, you will like this wine. In fact, two of our guests enjoyed this oldie very much and found it improve a bit towards the end of the dinner.

Of course, this selection of the five vintages does not yet represent the best quality that Pichon Baron has to offer. 1990, 2000 or even 2009/2010 should offer an even better experience and understanding of how great this Super Second could be. We will try these in future.

Actually, at the dinner, we kicked off with a white wine from Alsace - Zind-Humbrecht Pinot Gris Heimbourg 1996 and finished off with a dessert wine - Chateau Climens 1988. Both had excellent showing at the dinner and were at their prime. The Pinot Gris Heimbourg went very well with the pan-fried foie gras we had for appertizer. The Climens did not pair too well with the dessert we had; maybe pairing with a light cheese would have been better.

It was a fun evening. Thanks to the friends and guests who joined the dinner. Please stay tuned for our future event.

Written by Wine Monopole — September 08, 2015


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