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Review by: Robert Parker Wine Advocate: # 182 April 2009 Rating: 94 - 96+ Drink 2013 - 2043 Not far off the quality of the monumental 2005, Pape Clement’s 2008 was cropped at a lowly 30 hectoliters per hectare. The final blend is 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42% Merlot, and 3% Petit Verdot, and there are approximately 7,500 cases. The 2008 displays a dense purple color as well as a classic northern Pessac-Leognan nose of truffles, asphalt, scorched earth, charcoal, creme de cassis, spice box, and spring flowers. Super-pure and medium to full-bodied with stunning concentration, admirable purity, slightly more acidity than usual, and formidable depth and length, given the sweetness of the tannins and the ripeness of the fruit, this wine should be approachable in 4-5 years, but the vintage’s crisp style suggests it will last for 25-30 or more years. The flagship estate of one of the most remarkable men in France, Bernard Magrez, it counts Michel Rolland as their guru-in-chief. The viticultural work is meticulous, with de-leafing and crop-thinning, all the grapes are hand-harvested in small plastic crates, and are destemmed by hand by more than 200 people - unheard of anywhere else in Bordeaux. The wine receives a Burgundian-like punch-down treatment, a month-long maceration, and the wine is moved by gravity (rather than traumatic pumps) through all the different steps of winemaking. It is aged on its lees for nearly a year. For over a decade now, the result has been one of the greatest wines of Bordeaux, clearly a wine of first-growth quality
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