2005 Pape Clément, Pessac-Léognan
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Owned by Bernard Magrez, this great terroir a few miles from Haut Brion and La Mission Haut Brion has produced one of the superstars of the vintage. A blend of 55% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, Pape Clement’s 2005 has an opaque purple color and smoky barbecue and chocolaty notes intermixed with cassis and blackberries. There is also some underlying minerality in this full-bodied, super-concentrated wine, which has wonderfully sweet, well-integrated tannins. This majestic, multidimensional wines is one of the great, great wines of the vintage. It should drink well for at least another 25 years. (RP)
Dark in color, offering wonderful aromas of licorice, berry, fresh tobacco and currant, with Indian spices. Complex and full-bodied, with supersilky tannins that caress every inch of the palate. Long and satisfying. A joy to taste this young wine. Best after 2015.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Good deep red-ruby. Superripe, expressive nose offers black plum, smoke, spices and leather. Denser, sweeter and fatter than the 2006; even more generous and forward today. But this impressively chewy and rich wine also has a powerful underlying spine and plenty of lurking power. Finishes very ripe and very long, with the tannins buried by smoky, minerally soil tones. (ST)
Wine & Spirits
In addition to the gravel soils, what distinguishes this historic Péssac property is an alluvial deposit from the Gironde, which left a layer of sand in some portions of the vineyard, a layer of clay in others. It was holy ground of the church in the 13th century; this latest vintage seems to reverberate with numinous warmth. It feels plump with fat currant flavor when first opened, developing more muscular structure over the course of several days. The tannins have a pebbly articulation, a terroir character that extends the flavor of the wine and seems to guarantee its greatness over the coming decades.
*Barrel sample.* This wine has great spice, nutmeg and black fig flavors. It is full of deep, brooding tannins, and packed with intense acidity. It's fresh but has good concentration.
Robert Parker has called this "probably the greatest Pape-Clement ever made." (04/2008)