They have done a great job this year of not dipping far below the quality of the last few vintages. The only indications really are in the texture and the more savoury-edged register of the fruit. The tannins are a touch more pulled in on the finish, closing things off just slightly too early. Overall this is a clear success, with punch, personality, juice, fine tannic hold, and notes of bilberry fruits, charcoal and cedar smoke. Very good quality.
This is more layered and impressive than Gloria this year. Full and focused with structure and length.
The deep garnet-purple colored 2017 Saint-Pierre is a little reticent, giving glimpses at warm cassis, baked plums, tobacco and pencil shavings notes with a touch of forest floor. Medium-bodied with a muscular core of sustained black fruit, it has a grainy frame and plenty of freshness, finishing with impressive length. The blend is currently 73% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 7% Cabernet Franc.
The 2017 Saint-Pierre came from a sample taken from a new barrel although the final blend will include half that amount. It was cropped at 46hl/ha from 18 September until around 3 October in a second wave of picking. It has quite an introverted bouquet with broody dark berry fruit, tobacco and graphite, almost Pauillac-like in style. It probably just needs to evolve a little more cohesion. The palate is medium-bodied with grippy, slightly abrasive tannin but a fine line of acidity. There is firmness and density to this Saint-Pierre, weighty in the mouth but I find that it is missing some finesse towards the finish. Like the Gloria, it may well improve during its barrel maturation. A second sample encountered at the end of my tastings was even better and showed immense brightness and energy.