Tasting Notes Clinet 1996
This is a backward, muscular, highly-extracted wine with a boatload of tannin, thus the question mark. The saturated plum/purple color is followed by an aggressively oaky nose with scents of roasted coffee, blackberries, and prunes. It is somewhat of a freak for a 1996 Pomerol given its richness, intensity, and overripe style. Medium-bodied and powerful, but extremely closed, and in need of 5-7 years of cellaring, it will be interesting to follow this wine's evolution to determine if the tannin fully integrates itself into the wine's concentrated style. If not, it will have a slight rusticity to its tannin and structure. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2020. I sense this wine will be much more controversial than I had anticipated.
Served from an ex-chateau double magnum, the 1996 Clinet has a mature nose even in this larger format with blackberry and raspberry fruit, perhaps a little more animally than I recall other examples (just a little brettanomyces perchance?) The palate is full-bodied with firm tannins, thickly layered black fruit, mint and sage. I actually prefer the bottle served at the vertical two years ago as this seemed a little frayed and bucolic on the finish. Still, this is a pleasurable wine, albeit no match compared to recent successes. Tasted May 2013.