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Our Grand Vin Château Pichon Baron, classified as a 2nd Grand Cru Classé in 1855, is made with grapes from the oldest vines on the estate’s historic plots.This quintessential Pauillac offers an intense and profound sensory experience of great complexity. Château Pichon Baron exhibits elegance, intensity and exceptional length on the palate. It is a wine that improves year after year and can age for over 40 years in the cellar.
The reputation of Pichon Baron until the 1960s was superior to that of Pichon Lalande across the road, it was also placed above Pichon Lalande in the Classification of 1855. But on the death of Jean Bouteillier in 1961 its reputation began to sink. His eldest son Bertrand was still young and inexperienced and there was a lack of money for necessary investments leading to a decline in quality of the wines during the 1960s and 1970s. During the 1980s there were signs of recovery but not at the same speed as with many other properties during this time and certainly nowhere near that of Pichon-Lalande that had prospered enormously under the care of May de Lencquesaing to become one of the first "Super-seconds".
2018 was characterised by moderate winter temperatures with no extremes. There was regular rainfall from early December to the end of March. The total rainfall was significant, exceeding 500 mm, that is to say approximately 180 mm above average. Spring was mild, followed by a very hot, dry summer. Bud break, which started in early April, was consistent. However, more heavy rainfall and optimum temperatures favoured the development of cryptogamic diseases, leading to very significant crop losses in places. Flowering started at the end of May and continued smoothly. Great care was taken to protect the health of the vines up until the end of July. Then a phase of water stress, unfavourable to grape growth, gradually increased leading up to the harvest. Average and maximum temperatures were very high between bunch closure and the end of veraison, lower than in 2003 but slightly higher than in 2005. Veraison began in the early sectors in the last week of July and mid-veraison in early August.
Moderate temperatures resulted in very good ripening conditions. 2018 was comparable to 2005, with earlier development than in 2015. This early tendency for sunny weather continued until the end of the harvest. High temperatures and water stress were optimum for the anthocyanic richness of the skins and early ripening of the tannins. At the same time, the potential alcohol content increased rapidly, total acidity and malic acid levels were low and pH high.
The old Merlot vines were harvested betwen 24th and 25th September and the
Cabernet-Sauvignon vines from 3rd to 10th October.