This wine will long be remembered because there was a controversy surrounding its degree of ripeness. The color is deep crimson, bordering on black. The nose reflects the hot summer, with a very concentrated bouquet of blackberry, juicy cherries, jam, and a touch of understated toasty aromas that take a back seat to the ripe fruit.
2003 Pavie is powerful and rich, with a very suave texture with a certain overripe quality that gives the impression of sweetness on the aftertaste. However, it is important to point out that great terroirs always do well during heat waves, which is borne out in the natural equilibrium of this wine. There is also lively acidity on the palate which gives added depth. The excellent, firm tannin beautifully underpins the concentration and richness of this incredible wine. The aftertaste is mouthwatering and impressively long. 2003 Pavie absolutely must be decanted ahead of time in order to unveil its many charms.
It would be a shame to open such a great bottle too soon, but you will be able to appreciate much of what it has to offer in 3-5 years, and its full ageing potential is at least 10-15 years.
"The 2003 Pavie (7,080 cases; 13.5% alcohol) is closest in style to the 2000, but slightly more evolved and exotic. Its dense plum/purple color is accompanied by an extraordinary perfume of charcoal, creme de cassis, melted licorice, espresso roast, and blackberries. The wine, which hits the palate with a dramatic minerality, comes across like a hypothetical blend of limestone liqueur intermixed with black and red fruits. With massive depth, richness, and body, this tannic 2003 should be forgotten for 4-5 years, then enjoyed over the next four decades. The integration of acidity, tannin, and wood is flawless, and the wine is incredibly pure, rich, and intense.
The Wine Advocate
"Dark purple. Shows intense aromas of raisin, coffee and treacle tart. Very, very ripe. Full-bodied, superrich and velvety. This is so layered and powerful. Blockbuster. Best after 2008. 7,500 cases made.
"Impressive full medium ruby color. Quite locked up on the nose following the February bottling; hinted at currant, smoked meat and roasted nuts as it opened in the glass. Extremely powerful but a bit chunky today, conveying an impression of extraordinary solidity. One senses but does not taste the minerals and primary berry fruit. But this painfully closed wine already offers uncanny sweetness. The major mouthful of tannins calls for at least six to eight years of cellaring. A classic extreme 2003 that is currently in a sullen stage. This is sure to controversial-at least until it begins to recover from the bottling. My score may prove to be conservative, but today it's the dried fruit character that dominates."
International Wine Cellar