Chateau Pavie 2003
Bordeaux Red Blends from St-Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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 Wine Advocate - "At its release, the 2003 Pavie was somewhat controversial in wine tasting circles, but eleven years later it is obviously a great classic. Its deep purple color is accompanied by notes of vanillin, lead pencil shavings, creme de cassis, plums, black currants and kirsch. Full-bodied, youthful and rich with terrific purity and texture as well as a striking opulence, its 40+-second finish, stunning purity and wonderful perfume suggest it can be drunk now or cellared for 15-20 years."
Wine Spectator - "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. "
International Wine Cellar - "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."
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Chateau Pavie Winery
In the fourth century, Château Pavie's slope was planted. Parcel after parcel – Pigasse, les domaines de la Sable, Pimpinelle, Larcis – the bulk was built and consolidated under the Pavie name. This lies all in one piece on the slope of the hill southeast of the town of Saint-Emilion. The buildings and the vineyard at Pavie are at three levels on the side of the slope.
Since 1998, Chantal and Gérard Perse have owned this estate, which boasts the largest vineyard of all Premier Grand Cru Classés in Saint-Emilion. The old fermentation cellar has given way to twenty temperature-controlled wooden vats, and the quarries have been replaced by a modern aging cellar. View all Chateau Pavie Wines
About St-EmilionView a map of St-Emilion wineries (saint eh-meel-YOHN)
A region named after the charming, quaint historical town in Bordeaux, St-Émilion is situated on the right bank of Bordeaux. It's grapes of choice are Merlot and Cabernet Franc (called Bouchet on the right bank). The region has its own classification system, updated and revised every few years. Two of the hottest chateaux of the area (and the only Premier Grand Cru Classé A) are Chateau Ausone and Chateau Cheval Blanc.
St.-Émilion produces the most wine on the right bank of Bordeaux. As most of its wine is based primarily on Merlot, St-Emilion wines are described as having finesse and elegance. The best wine of the region can last upward of 10-20 years, like a good left-banker, but many find that the wines here matuer earlier than those based on Cabernet Sauvignon. The soils in the area differ greatly, from gravel to limestone to clay and sand. As a result, the wines of this region are diverse. Quality wines display silky tannins and ripe, soft fruit – the higher quality wine showing full-bodied texture and layers of complexity.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.
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