L’Eglise Clinet (and other wines from Denis Durantou)

 L’Eglise Clinet (and other wines from Denis Durantou)
After the big three of Pomerol: Petrus, Lafleur and Le Pin, L’Eglise Clinet is the Chateau constantly nipping at their heels, vying for equal glory. In fact, in some vintages such as 2005 and 2012, Denis Durantou’s flagship wine takes the plaudits and the crown. This is an estate that regularly achieves scores in the high nineties from The Wine Advocate, and occasionally pulls out a 100. The 2015 is all the things we have come to expect. It is a large-scale, multifaceted wine with equal parts grace and power. We feel that 2015 with its plushness of fruit and considerable pedigree will rival the wonderful 2005, 2009 and 2010 vintages. And at £1900 per dozen, it is a full £800 cheaper than the least of these comparable wines.

Even more compelling is the quite outstanding Petite Eglise, the second wine of L’Eglise Clinet. At £290 per dozen, you will not find a finer Pomerol for the money. If you missed them earlier in the campaign, we still have some cases of Denis’ excellent satellite wines: Montlandrie, Les Cruzelles, La Chenade and Saintayme. For those who haven’t tasted these beauties before; they represent some of the best values from Bordeaux. They are super-smart, modern examples of what can be achieved from some of the right bank’s lesser known appellations.

‘The 2015 L'Eglise-Clinet is a blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc, picked between 21-25 September at 41 hl/ha and matured in 70% new oak. Denis Durantou poured two samples for me. First from Darnajou barrel. Here, a very composed, effortless bouquet with extremely pure raspberry coulis, strawberry, almost confit-like scents that display ethereal delineation. This is not a powerful or intense bouquet, rather one that is sophisticated and refined, bunches of violet emerging with time. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy red berry fruit, crisp acidity, mineral-rich and tensile. There is tangible energy and refinement on the finish that lingers long and tenderly in the mouth, a wine constantly having something more to say. The second came from Demptos barrel. This was deeper on the nose, showing a touch more fruit, slightly higher toned. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin, structured in the mouth, perhaps the barrel impressing its character more on the wine than the Darnajou. Together, they should combine to create a quite magical 2015 L'Eglise-Clinet. Drink 2022-2045. 96-98’. - Neal Martin, The Wine Advocate

‘Lively and energized. Full body, intense and dense tannins. Great wine. Goes on for minutes. Such focus and clarity. 98-99/100’. - James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com

‘Denis Durantou's 2015 L'Eglise-Clinet is magnificent. A wine that has it all, the 2015 is vertical, dense and also remarkably translucent, all at the same time. The purity, freshness and energy of the 2015 is remarkable and yet the wine has immense depth. Readers will have to be patient, as the 2015 carries considerable tannic heft. In 2015 L'Eglise-Clinet is a wine of stature and true pedigree. The 2015 is a blend of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc brought in between September 21 and 25. Don't miss it. 95-97/100’. - Antonio Galloni, vinous.com