Chateau Petrus 1983
Chateau Petrus 1983 is undoubtedly the most prestigious estate of the Pomerol designation (Protected Designation of Origin from the right bank of the Dordogne, near Bordeaux). Jean-Pierre Moueix has owned this exceptional vineyard since 1969. It covers 11.4 ha of vines that grow on very specific soils. Chateau Petrus’ terroir is indeed made of very fine and swelling black and blue clay called “montmorillonite” that creates an area of low atmospheric pressure; this type of soil absorbs and restore water drop by drop to the vine. The vines are about 40 years old, they are grown according to the sustainable winegrowing principles and made up of a single red grape variety: 100% Merlot (prior to 2010, there used to be half a hectare of Cabernet Franc that has been grubbed up).
Petrus only produces one red Bordeaux wine, and probably owes its worldwide fame to Mrs Labat and Jean-Pierre Moueix. Madame Labat had always thought, since 1945, that Petrus had great potential, similar to Medoc First Great Classed Growths of the left bank. She even introduced the wine to the greatest personalities of England at Elizabeth II’s wedding. Mr Moueix, a trader who used to sell Petrus wines, managed to make it the Kennedys’ favourite wine, which greatly helped to perpetuate its grandeur and an incredible reputation.
Petrus makes a rich, round and velvety wine, full of blackcurrant, cherry, liquorice, violet and truffle flavours. Petrus red wine is indeed quite concentrated, with opulent and fleshy fruit flavours, but it is also distinguished by its amazing balance and length on the palate. It is the most popular wine of the whole Pomerol designation (Protected Designation of Origin). It can be considered as a legendary archetype of the greatest wine in the world. Petrus is obviously an outstanding wine and those who have had the opportunity to taste, vouch for it. However, even though it has been the best for quite a long time, it has also been facing increased competition from other Chateaux for the last 15 years. They have indeed considerably improved their cuvees, and an equal or sometimes even surpass Petrus, as shown by their tasting notes scores for some of the greatest vintages; but Petrus legend remains, and it seems that the price of the Petrus bottles (a yearly production of 25,000 to 30,000 bottles) does not suffer from downside risks. Investing in this wine remains a safe bet.