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With a dense purple color and gorgeous levels of fruit, especially black raspberry and blackcurrant, this full-bodied, opulent style of wine is another great success for Clinet, a château that has been on top of its game for the last decade. This is stunning stuff, and whatever new oak has been used – and there is plenty – it is totally disguised by the luxurious and extravagant fruit level. This full-bodied, opulent Pomerol should drink well for 15 or more years. Drink: 2015 - 2030
Although hardly comparable to what Clinet achieved in both 2009 and 2010, the 2012 Clinet is another star of the vintage. A powerful, full-bodied, muscular Pomerol, it reveals a dense purple color in addition to lots of opulence, a layered, full-bodied richness (somewhat atypical for the vintage), beautiful density and plenty of mocha, black cherry, truffle and graphite notes. It is a surprisingly full yet accessible Clinet that will be drinkable long before the 2009 and 2010 hit their plateaus of maturity. Drink the 2012 over the next 15 years.
The Clinet was started early on 8th September for the young vines, picked at just 12hl/ha and returning on the 14th to tackle the young vines. It was then picked 10th, 20th, 26th and 27th September for the Merlot, the 9th October for the old Merlot vines and the Cabernets the following day. That means it was picked over 32 days, the teams of pickers returning several times to the same plot in order to pick at the optimal ripeness. The alcohol level is 13.2%, more the 1-degree less than the 2010 and it was cropped at 34hl/ha. Clinet was expanded in 2011, so the blend is now 90% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Cabernet Franc and Ronan told me that he is considering increasing the percentage of Cabernet in the future. There is fine precision on the nose with marine influences - hints of Japanese nori and seashells developing in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied and very natural with fine tannins. This is a less hedonistic Clinet for sure, but very well balanced and full of character, perhaps reflecting the terroir with more clarity. With modest length, this is a well-crafted Clinet for medium-term drinking. Tasted April 2013.
Fabulous nose of orange peel, blueberries and blackberries. Full body, firm tannins and a cocoa, cedar and berry finish. Little austere now but so fine. Truly outstanding for the vintage. Better after 2016.
A wine of total precision, the 2012 Clinet possesses striking aromatic nuance and delineation. Crushed flowers, sweet raspberries, herbs and mint flesh out effortlessly, with silky, polished tannins that add to the wine's feel of graciousness. The spherical, beautifully textured finish suggests the 2012 will offer a wide drinking window of pure pleasure over the next 15-20 years. This is impressive. The 2012 is 90% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon and 1% Cabernet Franc. Drink 2018-2032.
Inky with black core. Very ripe damsons and something meaty. Leaner on the palate than I expected and slightly hard. Dry, fine grained but a little flat at the end. (JH)
Deep ruby colour. An aromatic, earthy and floral nose with blueberry and violet notes to supplement the black cherry core. The palate has real intensity, with blue and black fruits to the fore, but there is a liveliness from refreshing acidity and soft, silky tannins that make this wine an absolute joy. The balance and precision are truly excellent, and the lightly smoky finish adds complexity to a truly exceptional 2012 from Clinet.
This small (8 hectare) property is situated at the edge of the plateau of Pomerol behind Clos L'Eglise. It shot to fame following a 100 point Parker rating in 1989 and then repeated this feat 20 years later. The wines here are serious, dense and powerful. The blend is approximately 85% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Cabernet Franc. 60% New oak. This is sumptuous, sexy stuff with super-sweet, ripe, plummy fruit. White chocolate and creamy vanilla notes. The palate is full of dark cherries, toasty new oak and ripe, polished tannins. A very voluptuous and inviting Pomerol.
The nose has a brooding black fruited power and the palate has the richness of ripe black plum. It feels fresher towards the back bramble and some red fruited and the finish has less concentrated power. 2017-26
Ronan Laborde invited me to go and taste his wine via Twitter this year, which may well
be a first. I'm glad I dropped in, because this confirms the improvements in recent years.
The Cabernet gives the wine a little lift and a touch of graphite to complement the oaky, but
elegantly detailed Merlot.