Chateau de Pibarnon Bandol Rose 2017
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Pibarnon’s position at the highest point of Bandol seems to have been an advantage in the warmth of 2018, letting Eric de Saint-Victor turn out a rosé that’s equal parts brawn and freshness. Tangy strawberry notes highlight the fleshiness of its cherry center; notes of citrus zest and bay leaf trace the fine line of the wine’s acidity. It’s already complex and inviting, but the hint of tannins it holds suggests that this will become even more interesting with age.
Henri de Saint-Victor, descended from a prominent Paris family, discovered the potential of the Pibarnon site and planted it to Mourvèdre, Syrah, and Grenache. His son, Eric, is now taking this historic estate to a new level. Yields are being driven ever lower, and a fully modernized cellar is finally complete.
Provence’s leader in concentrated and age-worthy red wines, Bandol is home to the dense, deep and earthy Mourvèdre grape. Like Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Bandol produces characterful reds that, while approachable in their youth, are typically designed for the cellar. Given its coastal, Provencal situation, Bandol naturally produces an assortment of charming, aromatic rosés made of Mourvèdre, Grenache and Cinsault.
Whether it’s playful and fun or savory and serious, most rosé today is not your grandmother’s White Zinfandel, though that category remains strong. Pink wine has recently become quite trendy, and this time around it’s commonly quite dry. Since the pigment in red wines comes from keeping fermenting juice in contact with the grape skins for an extended period, it follows that a pink wine can be made using just a brief period of skin contact—usually just a couple of days. The resulting color depends on grape variety and winemaking style, ranging from pale salmon to deep magenta.