Image

 

Many connoisseurs of fine wines consider Petrus to be one of the most celebrated, distinguished and inimitable of all French wines. Hence it is difficult to comprehend that until the latter half of the twentieth century. Petrus was considered a relatively cheap, difficult to sell product, far removed from the globally sought-after, blue-chip collectable status it commands today.

 

PETRUS

PETRUS

 

Petrus displays an intense colour, a rich and complex nose and clarity of flavour. It possesses an unctuously velvet richness whilst opulent with an abundance of fruity notes and incredible length.

 

Appellation

Pomerol.

Although the wines of Pomerol have no formal classification, by consensus, Pétrus is widely regarded as the outstanding wine and the equivalent of a First Growth (Premier Cru) estate.

Owner

 

La Société Civile du Château Petrus

33500 POMEROL

 

Planted acreage

 

 

25 acres (10.4 hectares)

Grape varieties

 

 

The vineyards are 100% Merlot

 

 

Wines produced

 

 

Petrus

Terroire

Both top and subsoil consist of a high percentage of clay. The subsoil is blue due to the high iron content

 

 

Production

 

In an average year 2500 cases (about 30,000 bottles)

 

 

Top Vintages Produced

 

 

1921, 1929, 1945, 1947, 1950, 1961, 1970, 1975, 1989, 1990, 1998, 2000, 2005, 2008 and 2009.

 

History

 

Before the current success of Petrus, the estate and the original 17 acre (7 hectares) vineyard were owned by the Arnaud family for nearly 150 years. It was only when Mme. Loubat became sole owner of the domaine, by progressively acquiring shares in the estate between 1923 to 1938, that the Château’s wine started to flourish on the world market.

In 1947, at the occasion of the visit of the Lord Mayor of London to Pomerol, Madame Loubat gave him two magnums of Petrus 1938 as a wedding gift for Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip. In thanks she, and her niece Lily Lacoste, were invited to a reception at St James’s Palace on the eve of the wedding.

At the end of World War II, Jean-Pierre Moueix, Libourne négociant acquired the exclusive selling rights of the successful 1945 Petrus vintage and its international reputation began to develop. The partnership between Moueix and Mme. Loubat prospered.

Petrus was introduced to the United States soon after the end of the 2nd World War and the fame of Petrus soared in the 1960’s when the owner of the Le Pavillon restaurant in New York, Henri Soulé regularly served it to Aristotle Onassis, and to the Kennedy’s, frequent customers, and to follow suit and order this wine became a status symbol.

After the death of Mme Loubat in 1961, her niece and nephew inherited the estate but the latter sold his shares to Jean-Pierre Moueix in 1964.  His elder son, Jean-François is now sole owner.

His grand-son Jean controls distribution of Petrus in France via the company DUCLOT, while his brother Christian, with his son Édouard handle export sales via their company JEAN PIERRE MOUEIX .

 

Viticulture

 

PETRUS

The Pomerol terroir has a fascinating geological composition. The surface of stones and sandy deposits covers clay mixed with iron oxides, which is also known as “crasse de fer” (iron filth). This clay swells rapidly after rainfalls so that excess rain does not drown the vines. In the hot summer the clay redistributes the accumulated water, thereby avoiding potentially dangerous droughts.  The “boutonnière” of Petrus, situated at the highest point of the appellation, composed of almost pure clay formed 40 million years ago, is surrounded by thick layers of gravel deposited by rivers a million years ago.

Grapes are harvested by hand in the mornings to bring in cool grapes, and only when each plot reaches optimal maturation.  Fermentation and maceration take place over 12 to 15 days in temperature-controlled concrete tanks, followed by ageing in 50% new oak barrels after the young wine is defined in December.

 

Petrus in the news

 

Petrus maintains its cachet as one of the world’s most coveted wines.

In April, 2010 Chef Gordon Ramsay called his newest London restaurant Petrus. It is a 40 seat high class establishment with tables arranged in a semi-circle around an air-conditioned floor-to-ceiling tower that houses a 1,500 bottle wine cellar reflecting the top French vineyards as well as an all-star line up from all over the world.

Petrus has pride of place, with 33 vintages on offer, from 1924 onwards.

For further information:
Petrus, 1 Kinnerton St., London SW1X 8EA
Tel: +44 (0)20 7592 1609
www.gordonramsay.com/petrus

 

Petrus in modern culture:

Petrus was enjoyed by Hercule Poirot in Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie.

In the seventh season finale of US series, Frasier the main characters debate the merits of sampling a 1945 Pétrus.

In the US TV series The Killing, Councilman Richmond offers a glass of Petrus Pomerol 1977 to Detective Linden in Ep. 12.

Guests at the August 2011 wedding of the daughter of British billionaire Formula One CEO Bernie Ecclestone, Petra Ecclestone sipped Petrus wine (which retails for $6,500 a bottle).

Subscribe to our newsletter

Stay up to date with the latest post and updates

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Give us your consent