The history of the Pichon family goes back to the Middle Ages. Since then, numerous family members have played a role in the history of Bordeaux. In 1964, Jacques de Pichon, Baron of Longueville, married the daughter of Pierre de Rauzan, who created the estate. Their descendants were thereafter much involved with the Pauillac property. Raoul de Pichon-Longueville built the current Château in 1851. His family lived there until 1933. In 1987, AXA-Millésimes purchased the property from the Bouteiller family, then entirely restored the property, under the management of Jean-Michel Cazes.The château, an imposing Renaissance-style mansion with spiky corner turrets, was thoroughly restored and furnished in an appropriate mid-nineteenth-century style. In 1989, an architectural competition for the construction of modern viticultural buildings was organised in collaboration with the George Pompidou Centre in Paris. Today Pichon Baron is world-acclaimed as one of Pauillac’s leading estates.
The 14-hectare Sainte Anne terroir ensures production of Les Tourelles de Longueville. This wine is made using grapes from selected plots planted mostly with Merlot giving this wine its own character.
55% Merlot – 27% Cabernet-sauvignon – 13% Cabernet franc – 5% Petit verdot
Vineyard & Vinification Note
The Pichon Baron estate’s 73 hectares of very high quality gravelly soil overlook the Latour vineyard. This exceptional land, poor in nutrients and with little excess water, nourishes the old vines sparingly so that grapes are produced in small quantities but are of supreme quality. This is a terroir that can produce the most remarkable wines; the estate has striven to do so with constancy and excellence in line with this vineyard’s early history. The Pichon Baron estate team are highly involved in their work. They devote their unswerving commitment and values of excellence and consistency to crafting wines which are ranked amongst the world’s finest. Pichon Baron’s vineyard is planted 62% to Cabernet Sauvignon, 32% to Merlot, 4% to Cabernet Franc and 2% to Petit Verdot, and has been meticulously divided into separate plots. With consummate craftsmanship each plot receives specific care and attention adapted to its particular profile (soil quality and vine age and variety).
Winemaking is parcel-driven, to better pilot the specific conditions of both soil and vintage climate. Short pre-fermentation cold maceration for the Merlot (4-6 days). Then traditional vinification takes place in stainless steel vats, under controlled temperature. Maceration for 20 days. Malolactic fermentation in vats.
Ageing:70% from barrels of one vintage, 30% in new barrels for 12 months.
Vintage conditions: 2017 was characterised by a dry early winter followed by a rainy February, a very mild spring, a frosty period on 27th and 28th April and a warm, dry summer. Our estates were protected from the frost on the whole. Only a few plots were affected, representing 15% of the total surface area.
Bud break, which started between 25th to 30th March, was steady and consistent. The first flowers could be seen in mid-May on the earliest plots. Early ripening, observed at the end of July, was remarkably consistent.
The moderate summer temperatures limited the risk of water stress and preserved acidity. Finally, fairly dry weather in August helped the grapes to mature.
Cool, damp conditions in the first two weeks of September changed the year’s character. The skins started to develop faster, requiring vigilance in monitoring progress of maturity. Close observation of the plots was key to determining the 2017 harvest date.
The earliest plots of Merlot reached maturity, with good phenolic ripeness, in mid-September. The Cabernet-Sauvignon were close to the Merlot and could be harvested immediately afterwards without risk.
The Merlot vines were harvested on 13th and 14th September, the Cabernet Franc on 21st September, the Cabernet-Sauvignon and the Petit Verdot on 25th September.
Les Tourelles de Longueville 2017 is a beautiful, deep ruby red in colour. The expression is quite mineral initially. The fruit becomes more apparent on the second nose to bring out notes of very ripe red fruit, such as black cherry and bilberry. The attack quickly comes into its own with a well-defined, integrated and persistent structure. The tannins are precise and linger, and the very long finish is fresh. Jean-René Matignon – Technical Director – September 2019
A medium-bodied red with currants, smoked tobacco and some graphite character. Chewy and juicy. Plenty of fruit and intensity. Drink after 2021. 92 Points, December 2019.
The Merlot-based expression of Pichon Baron’s second wine contains 55% Merlot, 27% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Cabernet Franc and 5% Petit Verdot. Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2017 Les Tourelles de Longueville gives aromas of crushed blackberries, warm plums and mulberries with accents of bay leaves, garrigue and cinnamon stick plus a touch of anise. Medium-bodied, soft, plush and with plenty of mid-palate fruit, it finishes on a spicy note. 89-91 Points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown , April 2018
Features a gentle edge, with caressing plum, cassis and cherry preserve flavors flowing through, flecked with savory and floral hints and a dash of cigar box on the finish. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Drink now through 2028. 5,500 cases made. 90 Points, James Molesworth, web only 2020.
Best paired with all types of classic meat dishes, Asian food, rich fish courses like tuna, salmon, mushrooms, truffle and pasta. Also pairs beautifully with soft and hard cheeses.