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2028 - 2068
Reviewed by - Lisa Perrotti-Brown
The 2020 L'Eglise Clinet is a blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc. The Merlot was picked between the 11th and the 14th of September, and the Cabernet Franc was picked on the 16th of September. It has an alcohol of 14.4% and is aging in French oak barrels, 80% new. Displaying and opaque purple-black color, it needs a bit of swirling to reveal a fascinating array of earthy notes—black truffles, charcoal, mossy tree bark and fallen leaves—over a profound core of preserved plums, blackberry preserves and violets, with a waft of tapenade. The medium to full-bodied palate has exquisitely ripe tannins and bold freshness supporting the seductively ripe, black fruit layers, finishing on a lingering fragrant earth note.
The 2020 l’Eglise-Clinet is very deep in color. It has an intense nose featuring blackberry, wild strawberry, touches of Japanese nori and light basalt aromas, gaining in intensity and clarity over the 60 minutes I spent analyzing the sample. The palate has exquisite balance and a silver bead of acidity that slices through the pure black fruit with effortless ease. This is a very harmonious and focused L’Eglise-Clinet, and as always, it is not an immediately crowd-pleasing Pomerol. You have to sit with it and examine its facets, including those that require unlocking with aeration. There is wonderful salinity on the finish, and awe-inspiring persistence. A magnificent testament to a great winemaker.
(90% M, 10% CF; 14.4% ABV; 80% new)
Dense, fine, and scented to smell, freshly black-fruit ripe, subtle and persistent; rich, fairly full, fresh to lively, very finely tannic, a lovely restrained yet ample balance; deep, subtly oakily sweet, a dark ripe fruit, creamy and fresh at once, very long across the palate, very long to finish; aromatic and complex, effortlessly graceful, refined and complete. There is more structure here than in the Petite Eglise, less immediate charm, but there is a superb fruit core and wonderful scope. A beautiful expression of the terroir and of the year. 2032–50+.
Wonderfully bright, floral aromas with so much violet character. Such purity and focus. Ethereal on the nose already. Full-bodied, but very polished and deep with finesse and beauty. Incredible structure that fills the mouth.
90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc. Cask sample.
Dense and profound, the fruit savoury and pure. Profuse on attack, the fruit bursting on the palate with layered, fine-grain tannins in support. Purity and precision, the detail spot-on, the tannins of the finest weave. Great potential. (JL)90% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Franc. Cask sample.
Dense and profound, the fruit savoury and pure. Profuse on attack, the fruit bursting on the palate with layered, fine-grain tannins in support. Purity and precision, the detail spot-on, the tannins of the finest weave. Great potential. (JL)
The 2020 L'Eglise-Clinet is a towering wine. I am not sure what else to say. After having tasted hundreds of 2020s, L'Eglise-Clinet very clearly claims a stake for itself among the wines of the vintage. L'Eglise-Clinet can be a brute in its youth, but the 2020 is all finesse. Sweet red/purplish fruit, rose petal, blood orange and pomegranate are some of the nuances that emerge over time. Perhaps keeping the temperatures a bit cooler in fermentation explains the extraordinary finesse here. The 2020 simply can't be denied.
Always up with the crème de la crème of the vintage, the 2020 Château L'Eglise Clinet is no exception. It boasts a rich, powerful, opulent style that packs loads of ripe black cherries as well as notes of chocolate, earth, tobacco, and graphite. Possessing the pure, elegant, more focused style of the vintage, it still has plenty of mid-palate depth, gorgeous tannins, and one heck of a great finish. This beauty is a thrill a minute and will not hit maturity for another 7-8 years, but it will be a 20-year wine.
Tasted by Jane Anson(at Primeur week tastings in Bordeaux, 01 May 2021)
Noémie Durantou has taken over from her late father Denis with this vintage, and has produced a L'Eglise Clinet that is dark ruby in colour, and needs time in the glass as it is built and muscular. You need a little patience for the cassis, bilberry and raspberry fruits to arrange, enjoy instead the silky, velvety texture that stops the tannins being too restrictive and allows the palate to slowly expand. Not as expressive as in some vintages, but still exudes quiet confidence. A yield of 42hl/ha. Harvest from September 8.
Drinking Window 2029 - 2050