Chateau Pichon Baron   Pichon Baron

2013 Pichon Baron

By Chateau Pichon Baron

The 2013 Pichon Baron from Château Pichon Baron, Pauillac, Bordeaux

As a torchbearer for the classic power and aristocratic grace of Pauillac, the 2013 Pichon Baron from Château Pichon Baron offers a fascinating study in the tenacity of a top-flight château to rise above the challenging conditions of its vintage. This particular year was fraught with tribulations in Bordeaux, where both climatic ham-fistedness and capricious flowering conspired to test the mettle of winemakers. Yet, this offering summons an air of defiance against the odds.


Nuanced craftsmanship yields investment-worthy claret

In the glass, there is no hint of struggle or compromise. One is immediately struck by the firm backbone of tannin—a signature of well-crafted Pauillac—that lays groundwork for a complex overlay of dark berry fruits and subtle oak naunces. Reflective of its vintage's demands, meticulous sorting was paramount, ensuring that only the best berries contributed to what can only be described as an embodiment of focused winemaking and vineyard prowess.


An emblematic display of 2013's redeeming qualities

The cooler year imparts a freshness not always prominent in warmer vintages, permitting the varietal expressions to dance with an agility across the palate. It steers clear of overt opulence, favoring instead a restrained elegance, marked by cedar notes that play well with cassis and pencil lead shavings—a nod to the traditional Pauillac profile inherent to wines from Château Pichon Baron.

For investors, the 2013 Pichon Baron emerges as one to watch; it represents not just a survivor of a tough year, but a testament to the resilience that can create subdued unexpected marvels within a portfolio. This is not merely a triumph over adversity, but rather an astute embodiment of grace under pressure.

Although still youthful under its well-structured cloak, those who decant will find it unfurls to reveal something quite beguiling. It becomes less about extolling singular vintages and more about recognizing when astute craftsmanship elevates wine to fine art—an undeniable allure for both collectors and connoisseurs alike.

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Scores and tasting notes


Potentially the best of all the Pauillacs in 2013 (along with Mouton Rothschild), Pichon Baron is dense purple to the rim, which is not typical in this vintage, and exhibits stunning creme de cassis notes along with licorice, forest floor and white flowers. It is medium-bodied, but very complete, with serious texture, impressive purity, depth and ripe tannins on the finish. This is another 2013 that tastes atypically full and impressive. The final blend from a tiny crop at Pichon Longueville Baron was 83% Cabernet Sauvignon and 18% Merlot. Drink it over the next 12-15 years.

Robert Parker Jr - Wine Advocate #214 Aug 2014

Vintage performance