Château Latour | Pauillac
Château Latour is to be found at the southern edge of Pauillac, bordering the Saint Julien vineyards of Château Léoville Las Cases, and covers 78 hectares. After a period when it was under English ownership, in the form of the Pearson Group, owners of the Financial Times, and Harvey’s of Bristol, the property passed to Allied Lyons in 1989 and was then bought in 1993 by the French billionaire industrialist François Pinault, whose Groupe Artémis includes investments in French luxury group Kering, Christie’s Auction House, Ponant and Puma amongst others.
In 1998, Frédéric Engerer, who joined the estate early in 1995, was appointed Manager and under his stewardship a major programme of investment has taken place. This has included a total renovation of the winery, vat room, wine making facilities and storage areas enabling even greater precision in the production of the wines. In 2012, Latour undertook further work to enlarge the workspace and create a new ageing cellar, following their decision to no longer sell the Château’s wines en primeur.
Latour produces three wines: the Grand Vin, which always comes from the vines immediately surrounding the château, known as L’Enclos; Les Forts de Latour, the second wine, created in 1966, and now regarded as a great wine in its own right and certainly worthy of Classified Growth status; and finally a third wine, simply called Pauillac de Latour, which is usually the product of young vines. The second wine, Les Forts de Latour, always comes from a distinct location, rather than simply being the vats rejected as not quite worthy of inclusion in Latour itself, so it has its own distinct identity.
In style Château Latour is powerful, structured and compelling, and many have regarded it the most consistent performer amongst the First Class Growths over the past century, acquiring an enviable reputation for producing very good wine in the more challenging vintages. It has great potential to age, with the best vintages lasting a century or more.