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Flat front label of wine
Flat front label of wine

Chateau Pavie (6 Liter Bottle) 2005

Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
  • WS100
  • RP98
0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

This is the eighth vintage of Pavie produced under the ownership of Mme. and Mr. Perse, and it was a classic year which demonstrated that the chateau has a truly exceptional terroir. The color is a deep and dense purple, with violet highlights which underscore the wine's youth. Its clean aromas highlight good intensity and well-defined fruitiness. Black currants, blueberries and assorted black fruit are present, together with flattering chocolate and spicy notes derived from careful aging in barrel. The first impression on the palate is faultless, and the quality of the vintage becomes evident as its taste evolves. The wine shows a full body, both tight and supple at once. Everything comes together to create an exemplary balance. The tannins are fine-grained, with a structure which ensures a long and brilliant future. The wine's class and nobility express the care taken during vinification to respect the vintage's potential. The finish is mouth-watering and long, worthy of a great Saint-Emilion.

This is a beautiful, polished 2005 whose powerful and fine structure produces a full and round impression. Forget it in the cellar for at least five years, but its great potential will allow the wine to age successfully for 20 years or more.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 100
Wine Spectator
I love the purity of fruit in this wine, with perfectly ripe blackberry, blueberry and raspberry on the nose. Complex and full-bodied, with hints of new oak and wonderfully polished tannins that caress the palate. Long, long finish. This is not the blockbuster it was from barrel, but rather a complete, balanced and gorgeous red. Best after 2015.
RP 98
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Now that the 2005 Pavie is in the bottle, I would place it, qualitatively, a notch below the prodigious 2000, and a few notches above the blockbuster 2003. There are 7,000 cases of this 70% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc, and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon blend. Disregarding the blatant jealousy of his success as well as his outsider status, proprietor Gerard Perse has pushed the envelope of quality, fashioning first-growth quality wines from one of Bordeaux's finest terroirs. In St. Emilion, only Ausone can be considered to have greater potential in terms of micro-climate and terroir. Pavie's 2005 exhibits a thick-looking purple color to the rim as well as an exquisite perfume of blueberry and blackberry liqueur, unsmoked cigar tobacco, crushed rocks, damp earth, and hints of truffles and incense. The vineyard's limestone soils have provided massive concentration, a laser-like precision, fresh, zesty acidity, and massive tannin. Despite the wine's enormous concentration and intensity, there is a lightness to its style. As Perse has made clear, he is trying to produce modern day versions of such great vintages as 1921, 1929, 1945, and 1947, wines that lasted 50 or more years. I do not understand why Perse receives so much criticism. In the blind tastings of each new vintage conducted by the Grand Jury European, Pavie usually wins against 100 or so other great Bordeaux. As they say, the truth is irrefutable - this is one of the world's most outstanding wines, and the 2005 Pavie should take its place among the greatest achievements of Bordeaux in the last 50 years. Anticipated maturity: 2020-2060.
Rating: 98+
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Chateau Pavie

Chateau Pavie

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Chateau Pavie, St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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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.

St. Emilion

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Marked by its historic fortified village—perhaps the prettiest in all of Bordeaux, the St-Émilion appellation, along with its neighboring village of Pomerol, are leaders in quality on the Right Bank of Bordeaux. These Merlot-dominant red wines (complemented by various amounts of Cabernet Franc and/or Cabernet Sauvignon) remain some of the most admired and collected wines of the world.

St-Émilion has the longest history in wine production in Bordeaux—longer than the Left Bank—dating back to an 8th century monk named Saint Émilion who became a hermit in one of the many limestone caves scattered throughout the area.

Today St-Émilion is made up of hundreds of independent farmers dedicated to the same thing: growing Merlot and Cabernet Franc (and tiny amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon). While always roughly the same blend, the wines of St-Émilion vary considerably depending on the soil upon which they are grown—and the soils do vary considerably throughout the region.

The chateaux with the highest classification (Premier Grand Cru Classés) are on gravel-rich soils or steep, clay-limestone hillsides. There are only four given the highest rank, called Premier Grand Cru Classés A (Chateau Cheval Blanc, Figeac, Angélus, Pavie) and 14 are Premier Grand Cru Classés B. Much of the rest of the vienyards in the appellation are on flatter land where the soils are a mix of gravel, sand and alluvial matter.

Great wines from St-Émilion will be deep in color, and might have characteristics of blackberry liqueur, black raspberry, licorice, chocolate, grilled meat, earth or truffles. They will be bold, layered and lush.

Bordeaux Blends

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

WWH109033_2005 Item# 121553