91 Insider Points
Our panel was very impressed with the 2012 Bordeaux Blanc from Chateau Pezat, drinking wonderfully right now, loaded with bright fruit and a crisp minerality. Fresh peach and tree fruit blend with some tropical notes, green apple and lemon, with a zippy acidity that lasts through to the finish. Enjoy now through 2018. - DZ May 2016
This glittering white Bordeaux comes from wine icon Jonathan Maltus, the 100-point winemaker behind the spectacular 2010 Le Dome and a foreigner in a faily xenophobic land who is seriously shaking things up in Bordeaux. A wine from Maltus at this pricepoint is unheard of, and it’s a hell of a wine, too.
Wine Enthusiast writes: “A cool, very Sauvignon wine, with strong herbaceous and citrus flavors. It's crisp, showing a bright, tight, slightly mineral texture.” Our Tasting Panel calls this the ultimate in white Bordeaux, and one of the only of Maltus’ wines still to be glorified in the international wine press. As with the top Bordeaux estates, Sauvignon Blanc and a small amount of Semillon and Muscadelle grapes are handpicked and vinified to the standard of a Saint Emilion Grand Cru resulting in an exacting, unoaked and terrifically vibrant white to drink with seafood especially or anything light and summery.
Reasons why we love it:
One of Bordeaux’s real rockstar winemakers, Jonathan Maltus is also a pioneer in the “garagiste” wine movement. Born in Nigeria and educated in the U.K., Maltus left his successful career as an engineer to buy the then unknown Ch. Teyssier on the southern border of Bordeaux’s St.-Emilion AOC. Maltus proceeded to produce a range of reds from Teyssier from the property’s exceptionally diverse terroirs, including the Cabernet Franc-based stunner, Le Dome.
The vines that go into Pezat sit a few steps away from St. Emilion-- home to Ch. Ausone and Cheval Blanc and many other collectible wines that routinely earn 100-point Parker scores and fetch hundreds of dollars per bottle. This little gem of a vineyard and estate makes wines every bit the equal of those costing four times as much. Our Sourcing Team was intrigued by this chateau’s proximity to St. Emilion, and they guessed correctly that the vineyards were capable of producing a white wine every bit the equal of that made at Cheval Blanc.
This white Bordeaux is 85% Sauvignon Blanc, with a smattering of the local Semillon included as is typical of Bordeaux Blanc. More unusual is the inclusion of Muscadelle, a cousin of Viognier and another native of the region.
A very attractive, crystal clear, pale straw color. It is a wine of great delicacy with attractive Sauvignon character. Very well balanced.
The kernel for Pezat is a vineyard planted literally a pace outside of the Saint Emilion Appellation – towards the river from Château Teyssier near to Branne. Previously this large vineyard consisted of high trellised vines planted 3 metres apart – the norm in Entre-des-Mers where grapes are machine picked.
Planting down the middle of the rows gave the same density as a vineyard in Saint Emilion. Additionally, on the original vines, a sucker-per-vine was allowed to grow. At which stage the original vine was cut off, almost halving the height of the vines down to what one would expect from a hand-picked vineyard in Saint Emilion. The vines are now pruned on the ‘double guyot’ system. The secondary shoots are removed and the vines deleafed and bunch-thined. The grapes are handpicked and vinified as the other wines of the Chateau – to the standard of a Saint Emilion Grand Cru.
Pezat comes in three colours. The main wine is a lavish oak-aged red wine. The rosé represents a ‘saignée’ of the pre-fermented free-flow juice of our Saint Emilion Grand Crus, and the white is a product of crisp, barrel-fermented Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon.
An incredibly rich lobster dinner, (actually shellfish or fish of any kind) along with a plate of rich aged cheese is the perfect companion to this wine.