CHÂTEAU CLERC MILON

2010 5ème Cru Classé Pauillac

Grapes Merlot, Cab Franc, Cab Sauv, Petit Verdot, Carménère
Colour Red
Origin France, Bordeaux
District Left Bank
Sub-district Haut Médoc
Village Pauillac
Classification 5ème Cru Classé
ABV 14.5%

Very expressive, juicy, very slightly boiled sweetsy blackcurrant Cabernet. Lovely juice to this. Ample, big and weighty, but its so fresh and juicy - to my pleasant surprise. Just goes on and on and its so well-balanced as to have no edges at all. Fruit still popping away after a minute or so. Very impressive. Rating: 94-94 L&S (Apr 2011)

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The 2010 Clerc Milon has long been a favorite wine of mine. It has a gorgeous bouquet, with black cherries, raspberry preserve and a touch of Italian cured meat—all beautifully defined. The palate is medium-bodied, with supple tannin, very good weight and grip and a keen line of acidity. It is still very backward, with hints of black truffle in a very persistent aftertaste. This is simply one of the finest wines from Clerc Milon in recent years. Tasted April 2017. Drinking range: 2021 - 2035 Rating: 93-93 Neal Martin, www.robertparker.com(Jun 2017)

The sweet black fruits give richness on the nose and depth on the palate. Chocolate and liquorice help to enrich the mid palate with slightly fresher black fruits coming through towards the back. 2024-40 Rating: 93 Derek Smedley MW, www.dereksmedleymw.co.uk(Dec 2013)

Gentle and dry. Unassuming but delicately fragrant – dark fruit plus raspberries. Powder-fine dry tannins give little friction. Perhaps this one has been fined. Elegant, dry finish. 2018-2030 Rating: 17 Julia Harding MW, www.JancisRobinson.com(Apr 2012)

The powerful 2010 is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Cabernet Franc and the balance mostly Merlot except for dollops of Petit Verdot and Carmenere that achieved 14.5% natural alcohol – a record at Clerc Milon. An intense purple color is followed by notes of incense, creme de cassis and flowers and a broad, rich wine with superb purity, concentration and depth. This layered, expansive effort could turn out to be one of the finest this estate has ever made. Give it 3-5 years of cellaring and drink it over the following two decades. 2014-2034 Rating: 91-93 Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, www.RobertParker.com(May 2011)

Cabernet Sauvignon 50%, Merlot 36%, Cabernet Franc 11%, Petit Verdot 2% and Carmenere 1% - a little less Merlot and a lot more Cabernet Franc compared to 2009. The alcohol is 14.5%, reflecting Merlot's higher contribution here. A dark, glossy, dark crimson hue in the glass. Really seductive fruit character here, very expressive and open, far more so than d'Armailhac. There are dried fruits with a darker twist here, notes of black cherry and black raspberry. The palate is polished, quite creamy in terms of composition, seductive and yet relaxed and composed. The tannins have a lightly grainy feel to them, the acidity is firm, but together the whole seems very relaxed despite its flattering flesh. It is the frame of acid and tannin matched with the fruit texture that does this I think. Long finish, the tannins a touch more chewy here - the Merlot? Nevertheless, overall very attractive indeed. Rating: 17.5-18.5/20 Chris Kissack, www.thewinedoctor.com(Apr 2011)

Tasted 17 Feb: Lighter on nose than Armailhac. Tea-leaves freshness – more attenuated than Armailhac. Very crude and raw. Very, very young! The last vat finished its malolactic only very recently apparently. Will settle down. Tasted 8 Apr: Mid purplish crimson. Serious dry tobacco/leather spectrum notes on the nose. And then ripe black fruits. Really quite sweet and opulent on the palate. Those Cabernets seem just a tiny bit struggling up the hill to full ripeness... Bone-dry finish. (Score: 17 20-33) Tasted blind 8 Apr: Mid crimson. Pale rim. Very ripe nose. Very thick, ripe and dramatic. Loose and a bit formless with a dry finish. There’s a little tart note in there which some people might find a bit much. Drying finish. Fades rather fast. But overall there is succulence. It is clear that a lot of work has gone into this. (Score: 17 18-30) 2022-2035 Rating: 17 Jancis Robinson MW OBE - www.JancisRobinson.com(Apr 2011)

Rich blackcurrant fruit with some dry herbs/coffee spice nose, very good middle fruit and a firm, elegant structure and class, a château on top form. Drink 2018-35. Rating: ****18 Steven Spurrier(Apr 2011)

A blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot and 1% Camenere is a little reticent at first, but after 2 minutes of rigorous coaxing evolves a very pure nose of macerated black cherries, blueberry and cassis with very fine delineation. The palate is medium-bodied with a compact entry that seems to expand as it remain in the mouth. The tannins are a little more prominent than the d’Armailhac with a citrus-like freshness on the finish. It has a little more alcohol (14.5%) thanks to the Merlot compared to the others, but there it is what you might describe as a joyous Clerc-Milon. Drink 2015- Rating: 91-93 Neal Martin, www.robertparker.com(Apr 2011)

I can’t remember tasting a young Clerc as exciting as this since the 1980s. Fascinating aromas of blackberries and currant jam. Very deep. Tar too. Full and very dense. It just tickles the tip of your tongue. So much there. 50 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 36 per cent Merlot, 11 percent Cabernet Franc, 2 percent Petit Verdot, and 1 percent Carmenere. Rating: 95-96 James Suckling, www.jamessuckling.com(Apr 2011)

A blend of 50 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 36 percent Merlot, 11 percent Cabernet Franc, 2 percent Petit Verdot and 1 percent Carmenère, sourced from 99 acres (40 hectares) of vines located between the plateaus of Mouton and Lafite and the Gironde estuary. The wine shows an even more rounded feel than the d’Armailhac, with cassis, black licorice and plum sauce carried by very supple but substantial tannins and terrific acidity. The long finish has a solid tarry edge. As with d’Armailhac, assuming current price trends hold, this promises to be a steal in ageworthy Pauillac. Rating: 93-96 James Molesworth, The Wine Spectator(Mar 2011)

Château Clerc Milon

Pauillac Cinquième cru 1855 The tiny village of Milon is in the far north of the Pauillac commune and lends its name to Château Duhart-Milon. Château Clerc Milon is a kilometre away to the east, the other side of Château Lafite-Rothschild in the village of Mousset but, for some reason, also adopted the name of Milon. The Clerc comes from Jean-Baptiste Clerc who owned the château at the time of the 1855 classification when it was accorded 5th Growth status - a status that the Rothschilds (of Mouton, who bought the run-down estate in 1970) have striven hard to exceed. As far as neighbours go, they don't come more impressive than Clerc Milon's - the vineyards adjoin both those of Château Lafite-Rothschild and Château Mouton Rothschild. That's quite a lot to compete with! The vineyards are planted to around 45% Cabernet Sauvignon, a proportion that has slowly been reduced over the years in favour of Merlot (40%). There is just over 10% Cabernet Franc, a little Petit Verdot and, very unusually for Bordeaux these days, a small amount of Carmenere. The label shows an ornate pair of jewelled dancing clowns that are part of the art collection at Mouton Rothschild.

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