Chateau Pape Clement Pessac Leognan 2020
|France, Bordeaux, Pessac-Leognan
|Chateau Pape Clement
The 2020 Pape Clément is outrageously beautiful. Dark, virile and imposing, the 2020 is a rare vintage of Pape Clément that is vertical and statuesque in feel. Dark fruit, chocolate, new leather, licorice and cloves infuse the palate with tremendous depth. In a word: magnificent.
I loved the 2020 Château Pape Clément, and this beauty is up there with the top wines in Pessac. Checking in as equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, aged 18 months in 90% barrels and 10% in foudre, it offers a deep purple hue to go with a powerful, concentrated profile displaying both red and black fruits, lots of spicy, chocolate, flowery incense nuances, full-bodied richness, and an almost salty, bloody character on the finish. This beauty shows the concentrated yet utterly classic, focused, elegant style of the vintage and has so much to love. It's going to be even better with 4-6 years of bottle age and will see its 30th birthday in fine form.
This is snazzed up with flashy toast, but there's ample mulberry, cassis and plum compote fruit to soak it up, while notes of licorice and sweet spice fill in the background. A late tug of warm earth keeps this grounded. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Best from 2028 through 2038.
Aromas of rich cherries, cassis, burning embers, violets and dark chocolate introduce the 2020 Pape Clément, a medium to full-bodied, rich and fleshy wine that's ripe, layered and generously extracted but also a touch deeper and more reserved than the flashy 2019. While it would be an exaggeration to say that this estate's red wines are making much of a shift in the direction of restraint, the style is certainly less aspirational than it was a decade ago.