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Pichon-Baron launches new second wine.



We tasted Pichon Baron's more famous second wine Les Tourelle but not Les Griffons. Christian Seely, managing director of AXA Millésimes, owner of Château Pichon Baron since 1987, said of Les Griffons on its first product launch in 2014: "Crafting a great wine – one of the world's finest – requires an uncompromisingly high standard of work on the harvested grapes. Therefore, creating another second wine was a natural step to pursuing a strict selection policy to define Pichon Baron's particular terroir. Les Griffons de Pichon Baron, a wine that resembles its elders yet with its distinct character, is the result of this forward-thinking practice. The 2015 Les Griffons de Pichon Baron was picked between 18 September and 9 October, a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot, 60% aged in new oak and the remainder one year old. Hence, Pauillac's adherence and style made lots of very different from Les Tourelle. There is some chance that Les Griffons can be cellared for 20 years or more, but is ready to enjoy after 3 to 5 years.


The name Les Griffons stems from the property's crest, featuring two gryphons. The new wine will complement Pichon Baron's former second label, Les Tourelles de Longueville, made from a single Merlot dominant plot at the property called Sainte-Anne. Thirty-six thousand bottles of the new wine have been produced in its inaugural vintage – 2012.


Pichon Baron is a Pauillac-based second-growth owned by French insurance firm AXA, which also owns Suduiraut in Sauternes,


Excellent comments at the 2nd Wine level, such as: The 2015 Les Griffons de Pichon Baron has developed on the nose since I tasted it from the barrel: exuberant blackberry and crushed strawberry fruit, with hints of graphite and violet coming through with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, well-judged acidity, much more density than the Les Tourelles 2015 with an insistent grip on the finish that lingers for 30+ seconds. This is a superb Les Griffons with a soupçon of headiness! 2021 - 2038

Score: 93, Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, February 2018

The 2015 Les Griffons de Pichon Baron was picked between 18 September and 9 October, a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot, 60% aged in new oak and the remainder one year old. It represents 22% of the total crop, essentially a second deuxième vin, a terroir-based separation since this comes from more gravel soils. It has an understated bouquet, perhaps more so than the 2015 Les Tourelles that contains more Merlot. The palate is medium-bodied with grippy tannin, heightened graphite notes with a focused, almost brittle, but quite compelling finish, pencil shavings scattered over the aftertaste. 2021 - 2040

Score: 91/93, Neal Martin, Wine Advocate (224), April 2016

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