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Around 75% of all the necociant's 1945 Petrus bottlings we have tasted, have been fakes, and we consider us normally very lucky. So, it would be wise not to buy any of them with only 25% chance of authencity.
Drinking Pétrus may be an unforgettable experience. We has been lucky to have the opportunity to taste most of its great vintages. That is why wine enthusiasts often come to us for advice. First, WeI advise you to choose a good vintage, an excellent one if your wallet allows. If you taste a poor vintage, you will notice how it raises above most other wines of the same vintage, but you will miss the actual point of Pétrus.
Second, purchase wine that is at least 10 to 20 years old, because a young Pétrus is difficult to approach, besides which oak and tannins predominate in its taste. Young Pétrus may be impressive, but it ages fantastically and requires more time than any other Pomerol wine to reach its culmination. Finally, We would advise you to decant the wine with care and well in advance, and also to give it time to develop in the glass. Then you will have the opportunity to enjoy an unforgettable experience.
Little known 50 years ago, this château has seen the rise of a myth about the uniqueness of its wine. The wine’s inimatibility is due to many factors, first of all, an exceptional terroir - 40 meters above sea level, the highest point of the appellation - with a layer of heavy clay soil and an iron subsoil. These are ideal conditions for the expression of the Merlot grape. With such a special terroir, the approach in the vineyard and cellar is traditional and respectful.
The work done in the vineyard is fastidious - severe pruning in the winter, regular ploughing, crop-thinning, de-leafing, manicuring the clusters in the summer - and allows the perfect ripening of the fruit. The grape are manually harvested within two afternoons and sorted before crush.
Fermentation is carried out gently, without any overextraction, in temperature-controlled concrete tanks. The blend, very often pure Merlot, is defined in December and the young wine is aged in 100% new oak barrels.
This property made famous by Madame Edmond Loubat and then by Monsieur Jean-Pierre Moueix, culminates at 130 feet on the plateau of Pomerol. Ets Jean-Pierre Moueix is responsible for the cultivation, vinification and aging as well as the export distribution of Petrus wines.
Château Pétrus 1945 by John Kapon
For many years now, I have heard the story of this particular batch of 1945 Pétrus: when Wilf Jaeger tells you that it is the best bottle that he has ever had, it is hard not to listen. It just so happens this batch rested comfortably in the ‘Imperial Cellar’ for many years, and for most of those years I had to hear Wilf tell me over and over how great it was, digging my desire a little bit deeper with each recollection of their magical evening, which also saw the 1945 Trotanoy as a distinguished runner-up.
Low and behold, the last four bottles turned up in our record-setting May auction, and immediately after the sale I made my move on the buyer, who happened to be the top buyer of the event. I asked if we could share one together, my treat, as I had to have this bottle before it disappeared forever like that girl you never asked out during high school. I was determined for that not to happen again.
The first evening of my latest trip to Hong Kong saw the 1945 Pétrus make its way to the dinner table, at long last. First, we started with a 1955 Leroy Mazis Chambertin, a generous contribution from my newfound best friend. The Leroy had a truffle, mushroom and sous bois nose at first, with some dirty earth and soupy bouillon tones followed by secondary rose and citrus aromas. Its acidity was still extraordinary, and my host told me the story of how one evening this bottle showed even better than all the top Bordeaux, including a 1947 Cheval Blanc. ‘The power of Burgundy’, I thought to myself. The wine got better and better with each sip, shedding some of its dirt to reveal chocolaty flavours with borders of various nuts. Hints of tomato joined the citrus, chocolate and earth flavours, and the wine fleshed out in the glass as well. However, it could not beat the Bordeaux that would follow, and possibly even suffered a point accordingly (94 points).
Five years in my making, and sixty-five years in the bottle, it was finally time for the 1945 Pétrus. This was an original, no doubt about it by the looks of the bottle. Perfection came to mind upon the first whiff, as its nose was a kaleidoscope of greatness, pulling in every great quality from all the Pomerols right in to my glass. Aromas of plum, chocolate and royal garden marched into my nose with style and precision. Fine was an understatement, as its elegance and breed were of Olympic equestrian level, carrying over to its fruit, which was elegant but at the same time beyond wealthy. Its concentration was golden, as in bars not bracelets. I could not get over its density, both in the nose and on the palate. The 1945 was all that and then some, and it seduced me like a gorgeous woman. Its colour was still dark and vibrant; this wine could last another fifty years without issue.
Its royal garden qualities upgraded to Versailles status, and flavours of mocha abounded on its dense and deft palate, with nice traces of chalk on the finish. There were pinches of wild herbs emerging, in a rosemary meets wheat way, as well as a baked goodness in a coconut direction, but it was not quite coconut. Our sommelier noted, ‘strawberry’. The chef at Otto E Mezzo, Hong Kong’s version of Mario Batali, gushed that it was ‘so young and so healthy.’ What was so great about this bottle, and this vintage for the Right Bank in general, is that it still possessed a tension to its fruit, unlike 1947, which produced concentrated and much sweeter wines in general. I can only hope to taste this nectar again in my lifetime, but I strongly suspect that it will be difficult to achieve the heights that this bottle took me to. It touched my soul (99+ points).
It was a nice warm-up for the week that followed, a casual Monday that was anything but.
Average Bottle Price
|7 211€ +13.9%||6 332€ +1.5%||6 239€ +8.8%||5 734€ +5.2%||5 448€ -9.2%||5 997€ -10.9%||6 733€ +104.7%||3 290€ +23.9%||2 655€ +57.1%||1 690€|