Thread: Pape Clement
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Old 15-01-2009, 03:13 PM posted to alt.food.wine
Bill S. Bill S. is offline
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Default Pape Clement

Notes from a vertical tasting dinner of Ch. Pape Clement

Pape Clement I the oldest continuously cultivated property in
Bordeaux, being able to claim wine production since around 1300. It
got a new start in 1937 when the hails destroyed the vines and it
produced workmanlike wines until a renaissance in the 1980s, not
entirely due to the influence of Michel Rolland, who only came on
board in the ate 1990s. The wines tend to be approximately 50%
merlot and 50% cabernet sauvignon. They also make a white in very
small amounts (5.5 acres under white vs. 66 acres under reds) that is
very hard to find and expensive when you do ($200 plus)

De Venoges Brut Cordon Bleu NV – this reception wine was pleasant but
unremarkable. It went well with fresh oysters with horseradish crθme
fraiche, tuna tartare, and little cups of truffled chestnut soup.

Then, with marinated prawns and Dungeness crab stuffed calamari with
chickpea puree and smoked tomato

2001 Pape Clement Blanc – lots of lemon in the nose, and toasty nuts
(almonds, we decided) that went over onto palate, with good acidity
and length.

With wild mushroom foie gras ravioli, oyster mushroom confit and Port
reduction:

2001 Pape Clement – really excellent nose with all sorts of fruit and
a bit of lead pencil, smooth in the mouth, forward and with good
length, this drinks better than the 2000 today.

2000 Pape Clement – nose a bit more restrained, and more tannin
present but also very good fruit. This wine had excellent structure
and will improve over the next decade. I detected a bit of chocolate
as it opened up.

1998 Pape Clement – very nice blueberry and spice nose, balanced wine
medium long but clearly a rung lower in quality than the other two.

With roasted squab on sweet potato beet ‘nest’ with peach sauce:

1996 Pape Clement – some nice aromatics, then a wine that showed a
touch lean with the fruit lurking underneath. This one had the best
nose of the flight, manifesting sweet black currant syrup.

1995 Pape Clement – decent nose, but the levels of tannin an acid made
it seem rough and rustic. Disappointing.

1990 Pape Clement – I enjoy most clarets from this wonder year, but
sadly this one disappointed me. Lean and tannic, although it did sort
itself out a little with time in the glass. The fruit level seems OK –
maybe it needs time? Still, a far cry from the 1990s we are used to.
With beef tenderloin and Roquefort scalloped potatoes:

1989 Pape Clement – nice vanilla fruit nose, middle a tad lean and low
on fruit, and still fairly tannic.

1988 Pape Clement – this almost made us ask if they could have
switched the last two wines. Warm rice pudding sort of nose, decent
fruit not too much tannin (in an 88!), This drinks very well now but
there is no rush.

1986 Pape Clement – basically no nose at all to start with, though
with considerable work, swirling and prayer we did manage to induce a
whiff of mint and cocoa to show up. Typical 1986 tannin level (this
is not one of the ones that have come around at this point) it was
well balanced and I am going to reserve judgement – it may well show
better with a few more years on it.

Ch. La Tour Blanche – rich botrytis nose, very tasty indeed, with tons
of fruit and a clean long finish. This should have a very long life
ahead.