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Clinet 2018

Grape VarietyMerlot

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. 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, with all the Cabernet Franc now removed from the vineyard. The 2018 had a yield of 38 hl/ha and is being aged in 75% new oak. Alcohol 14.5%. Production around 4000 cases.

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Tasting Notes

The 2018 Clinet was picked from 19 September until 5 October at 45hL/ha before selection and 38hL/ha projected for the Grand Vin. It has a sumptuous and very pure bouquet with perfumed black cherry, iodine and crushed violet aromas, although it remains controlled and focused. The palate is medium-bodied with firm tannins, quite a muscular Clinet in the making with good backbone, layers of black fruit laced with clove, white pepper and truffle. This is nicely detailed on the finish. The 2018 should grow up into a very fine Clinet. 2023 - 2045

Neal Martin, vinous.com, November 2019

Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2018 Clinet begins a little coy and then, with coaxing, opens out to vibrant black cherries, kirsch, baked plums and cinnamon stick scents with hints of cloves and anise plus earthy truffles and fungi wafts. Full-bodied and chock-full of bright, energetic fruit, it has a firm, finely grained structure and long, fragrant finish. The blend is 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon. Aging is anticipated to last for 16 months in French oak barriques, 75% new.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (April 2019), April 2019

Blackberries and blueberries with subtle black chocolate and violets on the nose, following to a full-bodied palate with polished, creamy tannins. Beautiful balance and really refined texture. Drink after 2024, but already so gorgeous.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, March 2021

This is a young red that really grows on the palate with so much dark fruit and firm yet luscious tannins. Full-bodied, it grows and grows on the palate. Extremely long and vivid. Solid as a rock. 15 per cent cabernet sauvignon, the rest merlot.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, April 2019

The 2018 Clinet is a powerful, explosive wine. Clinet is unusual for Pomerol in that the wine includes a good bit of Cabernet Sauvignon (15% in 2018). Gravel, smoke, licorice, grilled herbs, leather and menthol wrap around a core of plush, dark fruit. The Cabernet is very much felt in the wine's flavor profile and textural weight. Dense, rich and inviting, Clinet is a winner from proprietor Ronan Laborde. Tasted three times.

Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, May 2019

85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon; 75% new oak. Barrel sample.
Black core, purple rim. Intense cassis, a touch minty, but also a slightly intrusive aroma that I think must come from the oak. For now at least, the tannins and the oak are pretty overwhelming thought I can detect lovely fruit underneath. Really chewy. (JH) 14.5%
Drink 2025-2030

Julia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2019

Very deep and inky in colour, with a ripe nose of figs and charred wood. The palate is rich and extracted, with bold, grippy tannins that make the fruit somewhat difficult to penetrate at this stage. What does show through is ripe, with damson and dried cherries to the fore. The wood is evident, a high char, drying sensation comes through to the finish. This will need a long time to resolve, but at this stage it feels slightly over extracted.

Farr Vintners, Farr Tasting, April 2019

The 2018 Château Clinet is 85% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon (which is more Cabernet than usual) that was brought up in slightly more new oak than normal, aging in 75% new and 25% once used French oak. Sporting a saturated purple color, it has a massive perfume of black and blue fruits, crushed violets, spice, and orange blossom. Full-bodied, deep, expansive, and layered on the palate, it's an incredibly hedonistic and sexy wine that shows the best of this great vintage. It’s going to be hard to resist on release and knock your socks off over the following two decades or more.

Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com, April 2019

One of the star Pomerol names showing us how it’s done in 2018. This wine absolutely stands out, being beautifully vibrant and very polished, where you feel the individual strands of flavour and know it’s clearly going to age. Here you get licks of salted rosemary sprigs right on the nose followed by a silkiness and round mouthfeel that speaks to the alcohol but you certainly don't feel it. It’s well judged, very Pomerol, and on the dark side of the fruit scale, perhaps because this is Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, not Cabernet Franc. I found Clinet a little difficult to approach in 2017, giving it a highly recommended but at the low end of the scale, but here it is roaring back to form.

Drinking Window 2027 - 2044

Jane Anson, Decanter.com, April 2019

(85 Merlot, 15 Cabernet Sauvignon) | 75% new oak, using around a quarter of 500l barrels | 14.5% alc | 38 hl/ha | 49000 bottles production | Merlot was harvested on the 19th, 20th, 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th and the 2nd October and the Cabernet Franc was harvested on the 5th October Dry and sour with a lot of skin and blunt tannin, this is a very backward Clinet and it is hard to see any fruit or tenderness here. The slightly sour notes are mouth-watering but they are also masked by the oak and this means that the fruit really struggles to make itself known. I am not sure whether this is a miss-step or simply that the wine is very closed right now, but there is a lot of tension and little flesh on display and so I am slightly confused as to when the fruit will emerge. I will be sure to taste this wine again as soon as possible to check its progress.

Matthew Jukes, MatthewJukes.com, April 2019
Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.