93 points James Suckling
This shows incredible decadence and opulence for the vintage with dried meat, black berry, blueberries and hints of mushroom. Full body, very polished silky tannins and a chewy finish. Lots of richness for the vintage. Persistent palate. This was aged 35% in cement eggs for 12 months. Better in 2018.
93 points Wine Advocate
This impeccably run, biodynamically farmed estate of Alfred Tesseron goes from strength to strength. The 2012 triumphs once again with its notes of dark plum, blackcurrant, licorice and almost a hint of truffle, its full-bodied, supple tannins, and beautiful, expensive mouthfeel. Complex and deep, this dense ruby/purple-colored wine may not be at the level of the 2009 or 2010, but it is a successful wine in this vintage, and a significant wine in 2012. Anticipated maturity: 2017-2035. (RP)
92 points Vinous
(65% cabernet sauvignon, 30% merlot, 4% cabernet franc and 1% petit verdot): Deep purple-ruby. Perfumed nose of violet and ripe blackberry jam. Smooth, rich and almost sweet on entry, then increasingly austere, with the sweet cassis and delicate herbal flavors overshadowed by rising, raw tannins. I detected a slightly green quality on the long finish. Though this wine lacks the amazingly sweet flesh of the '09 and '10 wines, and the classic elegance of the '08, I like its precision. Alfred Tesseron told me the estate picked late, on October 4, to offer the grapes a greater chance of reaching suitable ripeness, but they harvested quickly, using an extra sorting table. (ID)
About the Producer:
Jean Francois Pontet, Royal Master of the Horse in the early 18th Century, bought and consolidated several plots of land located northwest of Pauillac. Several years later, in 1750, his descendants bought neighboring vineyards in an area named "Canet", thus creating one of the largest estates in the entire Medoc. Chateau Pontet-Canet's topography and soil predestined it to produce great wine.
In 1865, the noted wine shipper Hermann Cruse acquired the chateau and its 120 hectares of vones. The Cruse dynasty provided the financial means to make one of the greatest wines in the Medoc. In 1975, Guy Tesseron, solidly implanted in the Cognac region, and owner of Lafon Rochet in St-Estephe, purchsed Pontet-Canet.
The family's avowed ambition is to pass on the history of Chateau Pontet-Canet and secure its future. Today, it is Guy Tesseron’s descendants who own the estate today: Alfred and his nieces Mélanie and Philippine, daughters of his late brother Gérard. Together, they have the same outlook. Alfred shares his vision of the estate with Mélanie, passing on to her its traditions, his outlook on vinegrowing and his passion for wine.
In 2004, the year of the first biodynamic trial which took place on 14 hectares, the wines were radiant, tighter and brighter. Alfred urged Jean-Michel to go further. The estate was fully converted to biodynamic agriculture. This decision became a commitment and a challenge, but also a first for a Médoc Classified Growth.
Since then, with each vintage comes new knowledge, furthering the understanding of the terroir in a profound way. The vine’s resistance to disease is better known today, the understanding of how different parcels behave has improved, always in keeping with biodynamic principles. It requires sincerity, pragmatism and transparency: in a nutshell, absolute dedication.
The wines of Chateau Pontet-Canet obtained organic certification from Ecocert and biodynamic certification from Biodyvin in 2010 and from Demeter in 2014.
A shared state of mind and a particular sensitivity are the key factors which have propelled Chateau Pontet-Canet to the summit of Bordeaux wines in recent years. They are the expression of the Tesseron family’s quiet determination to ensure continuity over the long term.