|Rebuilding work under way|
Their hospitality was superb, and the tour comprehensive.
Our host was charming, detailed and great fun.
There's considerable rebuilding work going on, but the few images below should give you an idea of how the place looks.
|The vines themselves|
It's up there with my best wine experiences alongside Cos D'estournel 1990, Montrose 1982 and Latour 1976.
The Merlot that makes up around 95% of their grape output is not my favourite grape.
But Petrus's position on a 'cap' of blue clay, similar apparently to that at Meyney on the left bank, makes it a really different kettle of fish.
I tried the Gazin 1982 from the vineyard just next door, and the difference is stark. The terroir of Petrus really does seem completely unique.
|Just after the harvest|
But it's also, as you would expect, beautifully manicured. A really unique place and I was humbled by the experience.
|If you are going to be a wasp, this is where you want to be|
We arrived a few weeks or so after the harvest, in mid-October, just when the weather was turning towards the properly autumnal and towards winter.
The 2012 harvest was a few weeks, perhaps a month in the vats and we were allowed a secret sip of a few samples.
One could certainly taste the differences between the differet parcels. I could get a sense of how those with taste buds far superior to mine begin to decide how the final blend of parcels will go into barrel.
But of course at that stage the wine is so different from how it will taste in six, twelve or 18 months and beyond, it was hard to comment other than to say "wow" and keep quiet and listen.
Petrus are trying a new grape cooling machine, pictured below, which is apparently unique. Its job is to lower the temperature from the fields for pressing.
2012 seems to have been a pretty reasonable year, from what I gathered. Not of course like 2009 and 2010, but by no means a bad harvest, from what I remember.
Of course one would jump at the chance to go back again sometime.
If I don't, I'll always remember our charming welcome and wonderful tour. Needless to say, if you get the chance to see it, it's a really very special place.
|Where the magic happens|
I won't go into prices. It's not a wine I'll be able to buy myself, unless I do much better in business one day than I currently do, but I'm delighted to have tried a couple of years of Petrus. Doing so is really one of life's special moments, particularly having seen the vineyard and heard the history first hand.
A memory to treasure. I can still taste every drop.
|Cooling harvest grapes|
|The 2012 harvest, a few weeks in|
|Sampled over lunch. Heaven.|