Want to explore all about Pomerol and the best wines from the region?
Pomerol is a wine commune in Bordeaux, Southwestern France. Although it lies in Bordeaux, the red wines made here are unique and different from ordinary Bordeaux wine.
Besides having no classification system, many of the vineyards here don’t have the long-standing wealth and history of the rest of the Bordeaux AOCs. Nevertheless, Pomerol wines have taken the wine world by storm!
But what makes wine from Pomerol stand out from other Bordeaux wines? What grapes are grown in the Pomerol appellation?
Let’s explore all about the Pomerol region - from the history of the region to Pomerol’s many châteaux. We’ll also walk through the grapes grown and the best Pomerol wines to buy in 2021.
This Article Contains
- A Quick Introduction to Pomerol Wine
- The Pomerol Region
- Does Pomerol have a Classification System?
- A Brief History of Pomerol
- Medieval History
- Modern History
- Pomerol Grape Varieties
- Other Grape Varieties
- Terroir of Pomerol
- The Pomerol Plateau and Vineyard Soil
- Pomerol Wine Taste and Characteristics
- Pomerol Châteaux
- Key Châteaux
- Best Pomerol Wines in 2021 (Tasting Notes, Prices and Vintage)
- Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 1945
- Château Lafleur, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009
- Château Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2017
- Château La Violette, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009
- Trilogie De Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2010
- Château Lafleur, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2010
- Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2000
- Château Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2015
- Château L'Eglise-Clinet, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009
- Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2015
A Quick Introduction to Pomerol
Pomerol is both a Bordeaux wine region and a type of red wine. Of all the fine wine regions in Bordeaux, Pomerol is the smallest appellation.
Where exactly is Pomerol located?
The Bordeaux wine region is cut in half by the Gironde river, which further splits into the Garonne and Dordogne river. Pomerol is situated in Bordeaux’s right bank (Libournais), near the town of Libourne.
(Now, don’t mistake it for the nearby Lalande de Pomerol region, also known as poor man’s Pomerol!)
Does Pomerol have a Classification System?
Although Pomerol wine is of superb quality and is ranked highly by wine critics worldwide, Pomerol has no official classification system. It is not part of any of Bordeaux’s classification systems either.
Some producers believe that this is because the Pomerol appellation is relatively new, in comparison to the rest of the Bordeaux wine region, and that the Pomerol vineyards were not well-established when Bordeaux’s classification system was created.
If you want to know all about the sweet and fruity Moscato wine - check out this guide!
Also, serve your wine like a sommelier by learning how to choose the right wine glass.
A Brief History of Pomerol
This part of the Bordeaux region has a unique history.
Viticulture in the Pomerol wine region might have existed from the time of the Romans. However, it was in the 1700s that it began to develop as a winemaking commune.
In the 16th and 17th century, Dutch traders established wine trade between the Bordeaux region (including Pomerol) and Northern Europe. During this period, the Northern European market favored white wine, so white grape varieties were planted in Pomerol.
The records show that the red wine grape Cabernet Franc was planted as early as the 1500s. Merlot was first planted in Pomerol by Louis-Léonard Fontémong in 1760.
Interestingly, until the late 19th century, white wine grapes continued to dominate Pomerol’s vineyards. Then the Dutch influence began to wane, and the high prices of red Claret made red wines more attractive.
In 1936, when Pomerol received its AOC status, the planting of white vines in Pomerol was outlawed.
The red wine grape Merlot continues to thrive in Pomerol due to the unique terroir of the appellation. And, today, Pomerol is exclusively a red wine region.
Also read: Want a festive bottle of bubbly? Here’s a list of exceptional Sparkling Wines!
Pomerol Grape Varieties
Let’s find out all about Pomerol’s grape varieties.
Merlot is Pomerol’s signature grape variety, with over 80% of Pomerol’s vineyards being used to grow the red grape variety. Pomerol’s châteaux produce both varietal and blended wines using the grape.
Old world Merlot, like that which is produced in Pomerol, is fresh with red fruit flavors and well-balanced acidity.
Pomerol Merlot is unlike Merlot planted anywhere else in the world. In Pomerol, the Merlot vine ripens early because of the unique terroir of the appellation. This early ripening makes the Merlot sweeter while maintaining its well-balanced acidity.
Also read: Check out how to store your wine properly with this guide about designing a Wine Cellar in your home!
Other Grape Varieties
Cabernet Franc is the second most-planted grape in Pomerol, taking up 15% percent of the vineyard area.
Cabernet Franc adds a touch of savory spice and structure to Pomerol wine. Cabernet Franc is deep violet in color and has a palate of black fruit and tobacco.
In the remaining 5% of the vineyard area, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Petit Verdot are grown. These last two grape varieties are usually only used in the region’s second wines.
Around 66% of the wine made in Pomerol are Bordeaux blends - a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc.
Read more: Want to know How Many Calories Are In Your Glass of Wine? Here’s just the guide you’ve been looking for!
Terroir of Pomerol
Pomerol’s terroir is unique and plays a big part in shaping the characteristics and diverse styles of Pomerol wine.
Pomerol, which lies to the east of Libourne, has no direct access to the river, with Libourne and the Saint Emilion AOC lying in between. However, the proximity to water bodies like the Gironde river and the Bay of Biscay gives Pomerol a more continental climate than the rest of the Bordeaux region.
The temperature in Pomerol can be mercurial, depending on the season. Moreover, harvest rains can cause grey rot on the Merlot grape. When the weather gets very hot, it can cause the Merlot to become overripe.
The Pomerol Plateau and Vineyard Soil
The terrain close to the Pomerol plateau is sandy and loose just like Saint Emilion and Lalande de Pomerol.
Pomerol’s subsoil is an iron-rich, dark-packed clay. The combination of gravel, clay, and sand is excellent for viticulture and is a large part of why Pomerol produces such exceptional fine wine.
Within the Pomerol appellation, there is a small area known as the bouttonière (or the buttonhole.) It’s distinct from any other vineyard in the world because some of the soil that lies on top of the sandy iron-rich subsoil is blue clay.
Château Petrus, the most highly-rated and exclusive Pomerol estate, takes up more than half of the bouttonière, as well as all of the exclusive blue clay. The other half of the bouttonière (without Petrus’ blue clay) is split between nine other châteaux, including Château Gazin, Château La Conseillante, and Château Lafleur.
Pomerol Wine Taste and Characteristics
Pomerol wine is typically lush, elegant, and opulent - the perfect bottle for a red wine lover. The taste of Pomerol wine varies, depending on factors such as the terrain, Pomerol producer, and the vintage year.
Many Pomerol wine bottles are blended with Cabernet Franc, and some with Cabernet Sauvignon, but it is the Merlot grape that gives this great wine the rich and distinct palate. Château Lafleur and Château La fleur Petrus both create red wine using a blend of Cabernet Franc and Merlot.
The wine produced where the vineyard soil is sandy and loose tends to be lighter and more acidic, with notable fruit flavors.
Wines produced from Pomerol’s bouttonière are velvety and sensuous. These lavish bottles have aromas of truffles and dark chocolate.
As stated previously, there is no formal classification system in Pomerol, but some Châteaux are widely regarded to be the region’s gold stars and produce some of Bordeaux’s most expensive wines.
Key Pomerol Châteaux
- Château Petrus
- Château La Conseillante.
- Vieux Château Certan
- Château Cheval Blanc
- Château Lafleur
- Château Le Pin
- Château Trotanoy
- Château Lafleur Petrus
Many of the key Châteaux mentioned above are part of the Moueix company, which owns multiple vineyards in Pomerol and Saint Emilion.
The Moueix company president is French winemaker Christian Moueix, who oversees production at many of Pomerol’s great estates. Two of the Châteaux that Christian Moueix runs are Château Petrus and Château Trotanoy.
Best Pomerol Wines in 2021 (Tasting Notes, Prices, and Vintage)
Let’s discover the best bottles of Pomerol wine in 2021.
1. Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 1945
This is one of the most coveted bottles of wine in the world. It is a bold, well-balanced wine with undertones of chocolate and tobacco and juicy flavors of plum and black cherry.
Price of Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 1945: $9590
2. Château Lafleur, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009
From the Lafleur winery, we have a dry Pomerol wine with well-balanced acidity and a high tannin count. It is sweet, with notes of smoke, truffles, and chocolate. This is a blended wine with Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes. Pair this fine wine with roast beef.
Price of Château Lafleur, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009: $1815
3. Château Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2017
This is a decadent and juicy bottle of Pomerol wine. It has the taste of ripe black fruit and a unique undertone of coconut. The Le Pin winery is extremely exclusive and one of the world's most expensive wines.
Price of Château Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2017: $5438
4. Château La Violette, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009
This Merlot grape varietal wine from the La Violette winery is absolutely exquisite - it is bold and dry, with well-balanced acidity and the luxurious taste of vanilla and blackcurrant.
Price of Château La Violette, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009: $579
5. Trilogie De Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2010
This is a very bold, very dry bottle of Pomerol wine, with both high acidity and a high tannin count. It is velvety and decadent, with black fruit flavors and earthy notes.
Price of Trilogie De Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2010: $866
6. Château Lafleur, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2010
Here we have a chocolate and fruit flavored red wine, with a high tannin count and a deep purple color. Pair this bottle of fine wine with Pauillac lamb shoulder, a specialty of the Medoc region.
Price of Château Lafleur, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2010: $1451
7. Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2000
It is impossible to go wrong with a bottle of the famous Château Petrus. This wine has an earthy, juicy palate with decadent notes of chocolate, plum, tobacco, and black cherry.
Price of Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2000: $5069
8. Château Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2015
This exotic wine has a strong nose, with aromas of jammy black fruit, leather, and oak. It has a well-balanced acidity and a long, elegant finish. The wine underwent malolactic fermentation in oak barrels, which gives it an oaky flavor.
Price of Château Le Pin, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2015: $5393
9. Château L'Eglise Clinet, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009
Here we have a refreshing wine with medium acidity and excellent structure. This cru wine has refined earthy notes and the jammy taste of black cherry and plum. Pair this Pomerol bottle with a fish dish like Lamprey à la Bordelaise.
Price of Château L'Eglise Clinet, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2009: $589
10. Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2015
This exclusive Pomerol wine from the region’s star cru is a lush and dense Merlot, with a fleshy, fruit flavored mouth and a well-balanced acidity. Though it is drinkable now, we would recommend waiting a few more years.
Price of Château Petrus, Pomerol, Bordeaux, France, 2015: $4945
Now that you know which bottles of Pomerol AOC wine to buy in 2021, you’re probably wondering if it’s a good investment wine.
Should You Invest in Pomerol Wine?
Short answer: Yes.
Though it is Bordeaux’s smallest appellation, Pomerol wine is of the highest quality in the world, and bottles from this cru are highly valued by wine collectors and investors. They have an excellent aging potential of 10 to 30+ years, which makes it a great wine for long-term investment.
Price Appreciation of Pomerol Wine
Price appreciation in the Pomerol appellation is dependent on the wine producer. Typically, wines from the Le Pin cru, Lafleur cru, and Petrus cru markedly increase in value over time - thanks to their rarity and winemaking excellence.
- The prices of Château Lafleur 2015 and 2016 have grown at a compound annual growth rate of 27% and 30% respectively since their release.
- The coveted Le Pin 1982 vintage is now of drinking age and its cases are being traded at $150,000+, representing a price appreciation of 182%.
Pomerol Wine Performance at Auctions
In general, Château Petrus and other wines from the Pomerol appellation perform remarkably well at auctions.
- A 6-liter imperial of 1989 Château Petrus fetched $35,100 at a Sotheby’s wine sale in 2017.
- Petrus 1961 went down the hammer for $144,000 at a 2011 Christie’s auction.
But, remember, investing in the Pomerol AOC needs to be done with the utmost discretion. The wine is not cheap, so most investors can’t afford to make a mistake - which is why we recommend investing through professionals.
Here’s how to do it:
Buy Pomerol Wines and Other Fine Wines Through Vinovest
Vinovest is a world-class wine investment company that helps you buy, store, authenticate, and sell fine wines for long-term investment and your own personal enjoyment.
Whether you’re an amateur wine lover or a seasoned investor, Vinovest is an ideal option for you.
How it works
Follow the simple steps below:
1. Visit the Vinovest website and sign up.
2. Answer a questionnaire about your risk appetite and investment preferences.
3. Add funds to your account (a minimum of $1000.)
4. Watch your wine portfolio grow!
Here's why Vinovest is your best bet for investing in Pomerol and other fine wines:
1. Easy buying and selling
Want a delicious bottle of Chardonnay or a unique and festive ice wine? Vinovest can help you. Using Vinovest's Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based online platform, you can easily buy and sell wine from any part of the globe, whether it’s a bottle of sweet white wine or a lush Pomerol.
2. Curated portfolio
At Vinovest, your wine portfolio will be specially curated by an expert team of sommeliers and data scientists using proprietary financial models based on historical data.
3. Provenance and authenticity
Before you buy your wine, Vinovest will check and authenticate it’s provenance. You can relax knowing that your coveted bottle of Screaming Eagle or your sweet and refreshing Lambrusco is not a counterfeit bottle!
4. Optimal storage and security
Your wines are stored meticulously in bonded warehouses that are kept at the perfect temperature, light, humidity, and vibration levels. Security cameras ensure that your wine is safe and secure, and power back-up systems are in place if the electricity goes out.
Vinovest has a comprehensive insurance policy to protect your wine, whether it’s recent vintages of Petrus, a La Fleur Petrus, or an aged Tempranillo.
6. Access to a global network
Vinovest is part of a global network that gives you exclusive access to limited releases of rare wines, up and coming vineyards, and wineries’ private sales.
The wines you buy from a renowned Pomerol estate or from anywhere in the world belongs only to you.
8. Easy delivery
Vinovest will safely deliver your wine to your doorstep or to a buyer if you decide to sell. Each bottle is treated with the utmost care, from the recent vintages of Château Le Pin to your bottle of sweet red wine.
A Precious Pomerol Bottle for Your Cellar!
Pomerol wines are undoubtedly some of the most sought-after ones in the world. They’re perfect examples of what can be achieved with the Merlot grape and is a real treat to drink.
Vinovest can help you secure the best Pomerol wine, as well as other fine wines, and help you curate an enviable wine portfolio.
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