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  • Date publishedSunday, March 14, 2021

Château Clarke 2016 (Bordeaux) - Wine Review

wine review is an excellent Left Bank Bordeaux red wine from the Listrac-Médoc AOC that arrived at the LCBO last month as part of the LCBO VINTAGES Release - with plenty of bottles still available across Ontario.

Château Clarke bears the name of the Irish family that acquired this wine estate in 1771. Over the next 200 years, the estate has been handed down over several generations while keeping the winemaking tradition alive. With a love for wine like many of his family members, Baron Edmond de Rothschild acquired Château Clarke in 1973 with a dream to turn this intimate, unassuming, and promising vineyard into a masterpiece with the pursuit of excellence. After the acquisition, the neglected vineyard was re-created over several years to the 54 hectares of vines that exist today. The focus on excellence in the vineyard and cellar has elevated Château Clarke to rank among best wines of Médoc. With the passing of Baron Edmond de Rothschild in January, the estate was inherited by his son, Benjamin de Rothschild.

Listrac-Médoc AOC, which itself is located in lower-central Médoc, is known for its three gravel terraces on limestone foundation soils. The nearby Atlantic Ocean gives the terroir in Listrac-Médoc a freshness that is reflected in the aromatic brilliance of the wine. While all Left Bank Bordeaux wines are usually blends with Cabernet Sauvignon the dominant varietal, there are exceptions such as Château Clarke. The vines at Château Clarke are planted on clay-limestone hilltops that are ideal for Merlot. Thus, this red wine is predominantly Merlot, and the 2016 is a blend of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon.

I've had the pleasure of tasting previous vintages of this wine and have always been impressed by it. From an excellent 2016 Bordeaux vintage, let's see how this is tasting tonight...

Château Clarke 2016 (92+ pts)

Tasting Note:

CHÂTEAU CLARKE 2016 - AC Listrac-Médoc, Bordeaux, France (#503904) (XD) - $54.95
Blend of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon. The shy nose slowly reveals itself with aromas of crushed dark berry, blackberry, black cherry, raspberry, and earthy wood aromas with whiffs of pretty red florals and herb. The full-bodied, concentrated, and structured palate has elegance and very good depth of fruit with nicely balanced spicy flavours of dark berry, black cherry, raspberry, and savoury earthy notes joined by stony mineral and sour cherry flavours. There's a touch of warmth on the mid-palate, but it's still well-balanced by juicy acids and firm, slightly chalky tannins. Savoury, stony mineral, and red berry flavours linger on the finish, with excellent length. A lovely Bordeaux to enjoy now through to the mid-2030s. Score: 92+ pts

To find other lovely wines by Château Clarke, please contact Philippe Dandurand Wines Ltd.


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