|Photo op at the minimalist Chateau Petrus|
After that brief refresher, I wanted to get to the point of this posting, and write about the wonderful time we had while touring the Bordeaux Right Bank villages of Pomerol and Saint-Emilion. In case you are not a wine geek, wines from the Right Bank are primarily made from the Merlot grape, with Cabernet Franc being the grape most often paired with the Merlot from these two villages. Cabernet Sauvignon is in the mix, but appears much less frequently and usually in minute percentages. If Cabernet Sauvignon is the king of red grapes, Merlot is the prince, and Pinot Noir the Queen.
|Up one of the limestone hills lies the Troplong Mondot wine-making facilities|
|More minimalist design at Chateau Clinet|
Our last stop took us to one of my favorite producers in all of Bordeaux, not just from the right bank or from the tiny village of Pomerol. In Pomerol there is no classification system, the wines sell based on their reputation and scores from wine critics. We were greeted by the friendly and very personable Ronan Laborde of Chateau Clinet and were shown the vineyards that produce the wines of Chateau Clinet. Next we made our way to the crush pad and then on to the tiny barrel room where barrels were stacked 3 high. Clinet has been on a huge roll of late, making highly sought after wines in almost every vintage since 2008. The Chateau is tiny when compared to the grand monastery-like chateau in the left bank. However, what it lacks in size it makes up for in spades with adept consumer appreciation, and of course with outstanding wines. Clinet makes a genuine effort to connect with the consumer so the memory of their interactions with Clinet resonates in the future when making purchasing decisions. The most gracious of hosts, Ronan was pouring the 2001, 2004, 2005 and the 2006 Chateau Clinet on this visit. This was by far my favorite visit, with the 2005 Clinet as the absolute best wine that afternoon. The 2001 was not too far behind the 2005, and worth a look to find if you can as it is a beautiful wine from a good vintage. 2006 was pretty tight and young still, and the 2007 showed the elegant characteristic of that vintage in Bordeaux. I personally sought out the 2005 and am constantly on the lookout for more. Every year Ronan is at the UGC tastings held here in the States so if you attend the next one stop by and say hello as you'll make a great friend from Bordeaux and taste one of the best wines not only from the tiny village of Pomerol, but all of Bordeaux. Below is a link to a few videos from our trip to Clinet.
We made our way back to the bus for our return trip to Bordeaux to rest up and get ready for our dinner that evening at Chateau Pichon Baron Longueville later that evening in the famed village of Pauillac.
|Mondot vineyards and further on towards the village is Chateau |
|The church tower at the center of the St. Emilion village|
|Look at that beautiful limestone in the soils, great terroir!|
|The Mondot barrel room|
|One of the corner towers at Chateau Troplong Mondot|
|The barrel room at Larmande|
|Chateau Clinet vineyards|
|Chateau Clinet vineyards|
|The outstanding 2005|
|Clinet's second wine|
|St. Peter at Petrus (notice the similarity in the name?), the clay cap that the vineyard lies on was originally named by the Romans|