Bordeaux, Bottle Notes

1996 Chateau Clerc Milon – Bottle Notes

The history of Chateau Clerc Milon dates back to the early 1800’s. In 1970 Baron Philippe de Rothschild, the owner of Chateau Mouton Rothschild, acquired Clerc Milon and put the Chateau on course to becoming worthy of its 5th growth status in Bordeaux. In 1983, the illustration for the Chateau Clerc Milon label was changed to a pair of dancing clowns made of precious stones. The original art was created by a 16th century German goldsmith. The 45 hectare vineyard of Clerc Milon in Pauillac is planted to 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc, 2% Petit Verdot and 1% Carmenere.

This bottle was decanted for about 30 minutes and served with steaks. I bought the wine on release in the late 90’s and the bottle has been cellared properly ever since.

Garnet in color. 12.5% ABV. Textbook nose of red fruits, cedar, leather and cigar box. Drying fruits on the palate with medium acidity and a healthy dose of tannins. Cherries, currants, creme de cassis and earthy mushrooms on the palate. The finish is long and smooth with pronounced tannins. I think it is clear the tannins are going to outlive the fruit here and I would be inclined to drink over the next few years.

My rating: 90 points.

Chateau Clerc Milon is one of the great values in Pauillac. The 2014 version can be found for about $50 and will certainly drink well for the next decade or two.

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