2009 Pape Clément, Pessac-Léognan (Pre-Arrival)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Ruby-purple. Vibrant blackcurrant, blackberry and smoke aromas show noteworthy depth and purity. Big and ripe on the palate, but with lovely balance to its black fruit and smoke flavors. The very long, pure finish features a lingering mineral streak and very fine tannins. This exceptional vintage of Pape Clement packs an amazing amount of concentration on a seemingly weightless frame. More important still, although it pushes the ripeness envelope as most of the wines of Bernard Magrez do, it manages to come across as refined and graceful, even though it's almost brutally powerful.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Although the 2009 Pape Clement may not be as sublime as the 2005 or 2000, but it is very close to those two efforts, and it will be fascinating to compare them (as well as the 2008 and 2010) over the following three decades. A blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc with a modest 13.5% alcohol, the 2009 reveals considerable structure and tannin along with tell-tale notes of burning embers, scorched earth, graphite, blueberries, blackberries and toasty vanillin, and a full-bodied mouthfeel. This rich, full offering is surprisingly backward. This cuvee should drink well in 5-6 years as one rarely has to wait a decade or more to enjoy Pape Clement. It should age for three decades or more. This 13th century vineyard situated in the suburbs of Pessac is owned by one of Bordeaux’s most interesting visionaries, Bernard Magrez. He has done a remarkable job in turning around this once moribund property that made a bevy of undrinkable wines into one of the superstars of Bordeaux.
Rich and muscular, with exotic roasted spice, braised fig and warm raspberry confiture notes that are supported by a broad baseline of dark cocoa, tar and freshly brewed espresso. Not shy about its modernity, but everything is in place. Just needs to settle in with cellaring. Best from 2015 through 2030. Tasted twice, with consistent notes.
A nose of sweet tobacco and wet earth with lots of ripe fruit. Plenty of blueberry character. Also lots of licorice. Full bodied, with super silky tannins and a long, long finish. Chewy now. Muscular. Best in 2020. (94+)
Barrel sample. Spiced pears in red wine, an exotic range of sweet berry fruits and nutmeg, along with a solid core of structure. Intriguing wine.
*½+ Less expensive than their 2005! 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 45% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc. Red berry fruit. This is very rich on the palate. Smooth and long. At UGC: New wave nose and flavors. Very sweet palate impression. Earthy finish. Ralph: Strong and masculine, with lots of coffee flavors. Overdone? Note: Futures item. Wine will arrive late 2011 to 2013. You will be contacted for delivery instructions.