Whenever Cornas comes to mind so does Clape. This is the most famous estate in Cornas...indeed it is the estate that single-handedly built a reputation for the whole appellation. This is a no-frills operation : no sign on the door, no fancy modern winery equipment, no new oak, no 'reserve' cuvées, just great vineyards and experienced, non-interventionist winemaking.
Clape's Cornas is deeply coloured, full-bodied, with a powerful tannic structure and great natural richness. Uncompromising when young, it develops surprising charm with age, as well as outstanding complexity and intensity.
Low yields of just 27hl/ha this year due to coulure, instead of a more normal 37hl/ha - so there might be no 2017 Renaissance produced. A tasting of the main constituent parts from barrel suggests a potent, ripe, tannic style. The young Reynards is rich in fruit with good acidity, if high in alcohol; Sabarotte is resolutely Cornas: impenetrable, resinous, firm and saline; Petit Côte and La Côte are fleshy and rich; the older Reynards admirably complete, with a massive, ripe tannic load. Pierre compares it to the 2009, albeit more structured. You'll need to keep this for a while, but it will be rewarding when finally ready. Date Tasted: Nov 2018; Drink: 2029-2040; Rating: 97 Points; Matt Wallis; Decanter
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