Château Grand-Pontet has an enviable position at the side of the road which heads west from the top of the town of St Emilion. This is, for many wine-focused visitors to Bordeaux, a well-trodden route, as it is the obvious route to take when travelling between the appellations of St Emilion and Pomerol. Indeed, I recall one trip to the region, to taste the freshly bottled wines (I confess I forget which vintage it was) when my timetable took me up and down this particular stretch of tarmac at least eight times in one day, as my appointments bounced me from one appellation to the other, and then back again.
Even though I have driven past Château Grand-Pontet so many times I confess that until recently I had seldom encountered its wines, despite the property’s long-standing ranking as grand cru classé within the St Emilion classification. It was easy to drive past the property and not even notice it, my attention perhaps more focused on the fact I was late for an appointment, perhaps at Vieux Château Certan or maybe Château Pavie-Macquin (depending on which direction I was travelling in). In 2019 the property became somewhat more difficult to miss, however, as the owners built a prominent octagonal tower overlooking the cellars. Seeing that it seemed to me that there was ongoing investment and effort here, something that did shine through in the wines, on the rare occasions that I encountered them.
In this profile I will look at the origins and history of this estate, before providing some detail on the vineyards and winemaking today, prior to concluding, as always, with all my recent tasting notes.