Chateau Pape Clement 2018

SKU
PCBX201810 UCAU
  • .
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  • 1 or more bottles
    $220.00
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  • James Suckling
    98 points
  • James Moleswort
    98 points
  • Decanter
    95 points

Editors notes

Named after its most famous owner, Pope Clement V, Chateau Pape Clement in Pessac Leognan makes both red and white wine from their 32.5 hectare vineyard. Vineyards for the red wine is planted to 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot, while the soils here are a complex mix of gravel and clay over a base of clay, limestone and sandstone. Maturation takes place in 100% new French oak, and while Bernard Magrez has refined the style since taking over winemaking duties the wines are still rich and lush in style with a concentration of ripe fruit.

Details

Tasting Profile

  • Light (Light)
    Full (Full)
  • Low Tannin (Low Tannin)
    Tannic (Tannic)
  • Sweet (Sweet)
    Dry (Dry)
  • Low Acidity (Low Acidity)
    High Acidity (High Acidity)
  • Aroma
    • Blueberry
    • Boysenberry
    • Herbal
  • Palate
    • Blue Fruits
    • Cassis
    • Graphite

Food Pairings

  • Pork
  • Red Meat

Critic Scores & reviews

  • James Suckling

    98
    "This is a very driven Pape Clément with fantastic density and finesse at the same time. Linear and driven, the finish goes on for minutes with incredible tension and focus. More cabernet. Refinement with power."
  • James Molesworth

    98
    "This is really well put together, with waves of steeped plum, currant and raspberry fruit, bolts of licorice and tar and a long apple wood accent on the sappy finish."
  • Decanter

    95
    "I love watching how Pape Clement is evolving with every vintage. There's still a bit of Venice Beach in its muscles but it has let some juice in between the firm tannins and it's all the better for it. There are ripples of freshness here too, with lots of fleshy fruit, and a slatey mineral finish that sits against chocolate and smoked cedar notes. It's clearly been carefully extracted yet still has the serious ageing ability and sense of confidence that is the signature of the property. 37hl/ha yield in 2018. Two-thirds new oak."

Other vintages

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Locations

France

Wine is being produced throughout France and has been done for over 2,500 years with certain Châteaux dating their history back to Roman times, around 6th Century BC. Ranking second in the world in per-capita consumption and first in total production quantity. More so than the overall quantity of wine is the quantity of truly great wines coming out of France makes the nation the envy of wine-making nations worldwide.

Two concepts pivotal to the higher end French wines, in particular, are the idea of 'terroir' and the Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC) system. Terroir refers to the way the geography, geology and climate find their way into the glass, telling a story of the origin of the wine. The AOC was set up in 1935 and has the primary goal of protecting the authenticity of the wines and the livelihoods of the producers. Appellation rules strictly define which varieties of grapes and winemaking practices are approved for classification in each of France's several hundred geographically defined appellations, which can cover entire regions, individual villages or in some cases, like in Burgundy even specific vineyards.

Classic wine regions in France include Champagne (home of Champagne), Burgundy (Pinot Noir and Chardonnay), Bordeaux (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot), Alsace (Aromatic varietals), Loire Valley (Chenin Blanc, Crémant) and the Rhône Valley (Syrah, Grenache Mourvedre)

The Bordeaux classification of 1855 is still in use, as is the Sauternes and Barsac Classification of the same year. Wines from certain regions can be bought En Primeur, which is when the wine is sold prior to it being bottled.

Bordeaux

Bordeaux produces some of the most highly sought after and revered wines in the world. Located close to the coast, in the south-west of France the town and is divided by the Gironde River. Wines to the west of the river are referred to as left bank, and are Cabernet dominant. To the East of the river, on the right bank Merlot is the dominant grape variety. Throughout the 57 appellations, over 10,000 wine-making châteaux grow the red grapes; Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec. These are commonly blended and collectively referred to as clarets. Smaller amounts of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc is also grown in Bordeaux.

In 1855, due to the high export demands of Bordeaux wines, Emporer Napoleon III requested an official Bordeaux classification system, based on market costs of the wines at the time. The Chateaux were classified in to five ‘growths’ from first growth to fifth growth and cru Bourgois. Also in 1855 The Sauternes and Barsac classification covered the sweeter wines, with Chateau d’Yquem the only Superior First Growth, followed by Premiers Crus and Deux Deuxièmes Crus.

Graves

Graves is a large appellation for both white and red wines in Bordeaux, France. It sits south of the city of Bordeaux, bordered by the Garonne River to the east and the Landes forest to the west. It is also Bordeaux’s oldest viticultural zone, with grapegrowing dating back as far as the Middle Ages. The appellation takes its name from the gravelly soils that dominate vineyards here. Graves makes dry white wines from Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. These wines are citrusy, fruity, and floral, with some nutty notes and a hint of minerality, and they can gain both body and refinement with age. For red wines, Cabernet Sauvignon is the primary grape variety, and there are plantings of Merlot, too. These reds boast floral and spicy aromas and rich flavours of blackberry. Premium examples can be impressive expressions, with ageing potential of five to 15 years.

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About the brand Chateau Pape Clément

Château Pape Clément is a Cru Classé Graves property that has one of the oldest documented histories of any Bordeaux vineyard, having been planted in 1300 by Bernard de Groth, the future Pope Clément V. In 1939 the estate was bought by the Montagne family and is now owned and run by Léo Montagne.

Pape Clément is located in the Bordeaux suburb of Pessac and consists of a chai and 32 hectares of vineyards, planted with Cabernet Sauvignon (60%), Merlot (40%) and small amounts of Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon and Muscadelle.

The quality of the wines at Pape Clément slipped in the 1960s and 70s, largely because of under-investment. Bernard Magrez was appointed as general manager in 1985 and he turned Pape Clément's fortunes around. He introduced more rigorous selection in the vineyards, as well as installing stainless steel vats and raising the percentage of new oak casks used in the maturation process.

Pape Clément now produces one of the finest clarets in Pessac-Léognan.

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