2018 Clos L'Eglise

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Wine Critic Reviews for 2018 Clos L'Eglise

A round-textured and layered young Pomerol with berry, plum, chocolate and hazelnut aromas and flavors. It’s full-bodied, plush and luscious on so many levels. Try after 2026, when it tightens up.

James Suckling | 96 JS
The 2018 Clos L'Eglise is dense and powerful to the core. The tannins are equally forbidding, suggesting the 2018 is going to need a number of years to be at its best. Heat and mildew resulted in an unusually deep Clos L'Eglise. Dark cherry, plum, mocha, licorice, spice and gravel open with a bit of coaxing. Readers have to be patient here.

Antonio Galloni | 95 AG
The 2018 Clos l'Eglise is a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc. Deep garnet-purple colored, it comes bounding out of the glass with energetic scents of Morello cherries, fresh black plums, boysenberries and lavender, plus underlying nuances of crushed rocks, woodsmoke and black truffles. The full-bodied palate is packed with perfumed black fruit, supported by ripe, velvety tannins and tons of freshness, finishing on a lingering fragrant earth note.

Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RP
A pretty, elegant wine from this terroir, the 2018 Château Clos L'Eglise reveals a ruby/purple color as well as smoking good notes of black cherries, blueberries, white truffle, damp earth, and a little bit of iron and bloodiness that emerge with time in the glass. With medium to full-bodied richness on the palate, it has ripe tannins, a balanced texture, and just a ripe yet elegant, fleshy profile. Give bottles 4-5 years of bottle age and enjoy over the following 10-15 years.

Jeb Dunnuck | 94 JD
This has the sensuous, easy generosity and exuberance of Pomerol offering soft tannins at first, but with grip as they close in through the palate, alongside seductive chocolate notes with liquorice on the finish. There was a big gap in harvesting between the Merlot on 19/20 September and Cabernet Franc on 10 October, as it had to ripen after blockages, but they were able to be patient and got to the full ripeness.Drinking Window 2026 - 2038

Decanter | 92 DEC
Enticing, with macerated fig and plum notes forming the core while dark tea and savory notes course underneath. Hints of wet stone and charcoal echo at the very end. Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Drink now through 2032. 1,665 cases made.

Wine Spectator | 92 WS

Wine Details on 2018 Clos L'Eglise

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Producer Chateau Clos L'Eglise: With only 800 hectares under vine, Pomerol is considered the smallest of all major winegrowing appellations in Bordeaux. The old adage proves true however, that good things do come in small packages. With approximately 150 proprietors, parcels of land are highly prized and extremely coveted. Pomerol is home to some of the most highly esteemed and sought after wines in the world; tremendous quality, limited production and high demand makes this one of the world’s most collectible wine provinces. Nestled behind its walled vineyards, the original farmhouse build in the 18th century of Chateau Clos L’Eglise proudly sits on beloved and highly desired terroir.

The 5.9-hectare vineyard of Clos L’Eglise is planted to 70% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc. These varietals thrive in terroir filled with rich clay and gravel-based soil with iron deposits located on a sloping hill. Their famous neighbors include Chateau Clinet, Chateau L’Eglise Clinet and Chateau Trotanoy. To say the local terroir is tremendous would be an understatement.

The Moreau family, who were well versed in Pomerol and also the owners of Chateau Plince, would bring Clos L’Eglise into the modern era. In 1975 the property and wine making facilities of Clos L’Eglise were completely redesigned and modernized. The Moreau family then expanded the vineyard to its current size by utilizing land already owned and being used for pasture. A large percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon vines were ripped out and replaced with Merlot. This would make a tremendous impact on the quality and style of the wines moving forward.

In 1997 the Right Bank estate took another step forward when it was sold to Sylviane Garcin Cathiard, sister to Daniel Cathiard who owns the mighty Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte. Her ambition was quickly noticed as changes at the estate began to rapidly take place. Cathiard’s daughter, Helene Garcin was placed in charge of managing the property, Michel Rolland was hired as consultant and major renovations commenced. The facilities were once again modernized due to their aging state, the replacement of concrete vats was commissioned and the remaining Cabernet Sauvignon vines were ripped out and replanted to Merlot.

Today, Clos L’Eglise is one of the most recognized names in Pomerol with an annual production of close to only 2,400 cases. Clos L’Eglise is a wine that demands patience but is rewarded with a rich, full-bodied wine that expresses ripe plums, chocolate and floral characteristics with a deep, concentrated, lush texture. Eight to ten years of bottle age is required before it can express its true potential and will age gracefully for up to 30 years. The property has a second wine named Esprit de L’Eglise.
Region Bordeaux: Even among the greatest and most reputable wine regions on the planet, Bordeaux stands above the rest. The winemakers of this region have a single-minded dedication to the fine art of viticulture and their efforts never fail to show. If you consider yourself a fine wine enthusiast, you owe it to yourself to visit Bordeaux - life changing. Whether you wish to drink some inspirational and gripping wine as soon as possible, or you want to add some masterpieces to your collection, no region on Earth is a more obvious choice.

The noble and beautiful Garonne and Dordogne rivers surge through southwestern France, enriching the soil in a way very few other places can boast. The limestone-based earth is rich in calcium, and the almost oceanic climate conditions give the staple Bordeaux grape varietals vigor and flavor like nowhere else. For their illustrious reds, Bordeaux winemakers rely on a proven combination of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Meanwhile, a sip of their excellent white wine hints at the use of Semillon, Muscadelle and Sauvignon Blanc.Each of these varietals carries a unique identity, making every quality wine a character piece to rival Citizen Kane. It can be incredibly hard to choose only a few wines to collect for your cellar!
Subregion Pomerol
Country France: Words fail us when trying to adequately portray France's place in the world of wine. It's downright impossible to imagine what wine would feel and taste like had it not been for France's many, many viticultural pioneers. Fine wine is the blood of France's vigorously beating heart, and it finds itself in many aspects of French culture. With a viticultural history that dates all the way back to the 6th century BC, France now enjoys its position as the most famous and reputable wine region on the planet. If you have a burning passion for masterfully crafted, mouth-watering, mind-expanding wines, then regular visits to France are probably already in your schedule, and for a good reason.
Type of Wine Bordeaux Red: Picture in your mind a combination of cedar, lead pencil, blackcurrant, plum and mineral aromatics, and texture that caresses your palate like a playful lover. The experience is thrilling from the first whiff to the final seconds of a tannic, generous finish - that is what you'll get from a Bordeaux Red
Varietal Red Bordeaux Blend: The inhabitants of the Bordeaux region of France have been cultivating wine-grapes for thousands of years. Ancient Roman ruins litter the vineyards from Saint Emilion to Graves where the art of blending Bordeaux varietals has been practiced and perfected over a very long history. Bordeaux’s climate, terroir and soils, though varied, provide the optimal growing conditions for the red grape varietals planted in the region.

Rarely listed on the labels as “blend,” the red wines of Bordeaux are perhaps the most artfully designed and celebrated in the world. The calculated art of blending the native Bordeaux varietals is impressively accomplished in the most famous winegrowing region in the world. The phrase Bordeaux Blend which seems to have been coined by British wine merchants in the 19th Century relates as much to wines made from the blend as to the grape variety combination itself.

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec and occasionally Carmenere are the lead characters in the creation of Red Bordeaux Blends. Each plays a part in their own fashion and implemented in various combinations and percentages in each appellation within Bordeaux. Red Bordeaux Blends are majorly composed of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, roughly making up 90% of all Bordeaux Blends. Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec (occasionally Carmenere) are also important components and vital to the production of the region’s red wines.

For simplicity, the winegrowing region of Bordeaux can be divided into three main appellations producing Red Bordeaux Blends; the Left Bank (Medoc), Right Bank and Pessac-Leognan (Graves). The Left Bank has a terroir comprised of a wide variety of gravel, stones, sand, limestone and clay soils on a natural terrain of gentle slopes. This sets the stage perfectly for the production of Cabernet Sauvignon, which is the dominant grape of the Left Bank. For example, Chateau Lafite (Paulliac) is composed of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon.

The Right Bank is dominated by clay and limestone with sand and gravel, but the clay in the Right Bank is distinctly its own and adds to the health, growth and vitality of the vines of the varietals grown here. Right Bank wines are typically 80% Merlot-based, which are often denser, richer and mature earlier than those of the Left Bank (with exceptions – Petrus for example). Merlot is a vital component to Pomerol winegrowing and making. Cabernet Franc also plays a major role in the Right Bank, most notably, in Saint Emilion, where the infamous vineyards of Chateau Ausone and Chateau Cheval Blanc are planted to 55% and 52% Cabernet Franc, respectively. Chateaux that produce wines with a majority of Cabernet Franc are considered “old school” producers, but have perfected the use of Cabernet Franc, which was originally used as a blending grape.

Pessac-Leognan (Graves) enjoys a temperate climate, natural hygrometry influenced by the ocean, and has a terroir composed of gravelly soil over a clay subsoil on sloping, hilly terrain. Natural drainage due to the hilly terrain as well as the gravelly soil structure are perfectly attuned to the Cabernet Sauvignon grape vine, which prospers under these conditions. Pessac reaps the benefits of having the terroir of both the Left and Right Bank as it contains gravel and clay. The clay sub-soil allows the growth and success of Merlot, as well as Cabernet Franc. It is home to the only First Growth not in the Medoc. The 50-hectare vineyard of Haut Brion is planted to 45.4% Merlot, 43.9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9.7% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot.

The percentage of Petit Verdot and Malbec may be lesser in quantity, but not in quality. They are vital to the region’s creation of Red Bordeaux Blends. The combination of Bordeaux varietals is legendary in the region, around the world and has influenced winegrowers worldwide to plant and vinify wines which resemble those of Red Bordeaux Blends.

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