By Chateau Clinet
2013 Clinet from Chateau Clinet, Pomerol, Bordeaux
The 2013 vintage in Bordeaux tested the mettle of the region's vintners, with Mother Nature throwing a gauntlet of challenges. Despite the complexities of the year, some estates managed to produce compelling wines that reflect both the prowess of the winemaker and the resilience of the vine. Among these, the 2013 Clinet from Chateau Clinet emerges as a beacon of the Pomerol appellation's agility.
Precise Viticulture Meets Patronage
It is no secret that successful fine wine investment hinges on selection; not just the choice of region, but the year and château are paramount. The 2013 vintage at Chateau Clinet was notably low yielding due to stringent selection processes necessitated by uneven flowering and testing weather. However, such adversity often becomes the crucible for crafting wines with distinct character, and this Clinet is no exception.
A Vintage to Remember
The 2013 Clinet deftly conveys its exceptional terroir through a composition less ostentatious than riper years but underscored by a poised elegance. There is a litheness about this vintage; it reveals layers of complex dark fruit, subtle earthiness and well-integrated tannins that imply a capacity for finesse with age. The cooler conditions of 2013 imbue the wine with a refreshing acidity, presenting an overall balance which gracefully sidesteps the excessive weight often found in hotter vintages.
Collectors and investors alike should take heed of this Pomerol offering, for its stature is reflective of robust viticultural practices coupled with astute cellar management—hallmarks that favour longevity and progressive development in bottle.
In an era where distinctive narratives are prized alongside qualitative excellence in oenophilic ventures, the 2013 Clinet from Chateau Clinet is a conversation piece—one that speaks fluently about perseverance in viticulture and artistry in winemaking under trying circumstances. It stands poised to enliven portfolios, appealing to both connoisseurs of complexity and patrons seeking diversity in their compilations of investment-grade wines.
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Scores and tasting notes
A terrific success and star in this vintage, this blend of 90% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon and the rest Cabernet Franc came from a mere 25 acres of vineyard and averaged 33 hectoliters per hectare, with close to 13% natural alcohol. The entire harvest took place September 30-October 12. The wine is impressive in this vintage, its beautiful, dense, blue/black color is followed by a striking nose of creme de cassis, blackberry fruit, charcoal and a hint of camphor. The wine is rich and medium to full-bodied, displaying surprising texture, depth and breadth. This is a rich wine with good acidity and ripe tannin. It is a relatively big boy for the vintage and should drink well in 2-3 years and last up to 15 or more. It is so good, it is clearly a sleeper of the vintage, even though Clinet has been doing fabulous work for a number of years.
Robert Parker Jr - Wine Advocate #214 Aug 2014
The 2013 Clinet was one of the better wines that I tasted from barrel. Indeed both Robert Parker and I scored this Pomerol around the same mark and now it is in bottle, it has fulfilled my expectations as a delicious, easy-going, but still well-crafted wine from Ronan Laborde. It has a delicate but precise bouquet that gains intensity in the glass, cassis and a touch of wild mint, ground pepper emerging with time. The palate is medium-bodied with slightly grainy tannin that need another 12-18 months to soften, however there is adequate fruit underneath with a linear, slightly sappy finish. Enjoy this over the next 10-12 years.
Neal Martin - The Wine Advocate, 28 October 2016
A blend of 90% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 1% Cabernet Franc (the highest percentage of Merlot ever) the Clinet 2013 was picked between 30 September until 12 October, finishing with the two Cabernets. Ronan Laborde told me that it was the most compact harvest he had undertaken: 4½ days within 13 days, the fruit selected through an optical sorting machine. The level of new oak is 60%, up from 2012, because Jean-Michel thought the fruit was good enough, with an IPT of 85 compared to 75. The nose takes some time to unfurl, broody and reticent at first, revealing redcurrant and cranberry scents mixed with dried flowers with time. The palate is well balanced with quite linear tannins, the oak nicely integrated and lending this Clinet good depth. It is a more masculine Clinet without the length of a great Chateau Clinet, but clean and pure. It will need 5 or 6 years to unwind after bottling. Tasted April 2014.
Neal Martin - Wine Advocate - Wine Journal