“With their smoky and spicy bouquet, the red wines are of an admirable quality and a very characteristic softness. The wine is both concentrated, fine and harmonious, with an aromatic palette as wide as it is precise. The depth and length in the mouth are exceptional. Quality of the terroir, sustained efforts and dynamism have borne fruit bringing Pape Clément to a level very close to that of the premiers crus.” - Figaro Vin
Wine Advocate 91: This brilliant blend of 54% Cabernet Sauvignon and 46% Merlot (which was harvested very late) reveals complex aromas of lead pencil shavings, burning embers, black currants, cherries, and blackberries as well as a subtle smoky charcoal component. Medium to full-bodied and spicy with sweet tannin and an opulent, fleshy personality, it is a terrific effort from this great Pessac-Leognan vineyard.
James Suckling 96: Intense blackberry and blueberry aromas as well as mushroom undertones. Violets, too. Sweet tobacco. Full-bodied and layered with polished tannins. Very long and beautiful.
Wine Advocate 94: The 2014 Pape Clement has quite a potent bouquet with lavish red cherry, kirsch, iodine and pastille-like scents, the oak probably needing another couple of years to fully integrate. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin, a fine line of acidity, quite refined and focused with appreciable tension towards the finish that comes laden with succulent, tobacco-infused blackberry fruit. This is a sumptuous and yet refined Pape-Clement that demonstrated the most matière or substance out of all the Pessac-Léognan 2014s that I tasted, except for the Haut-Brion. It is certainly a wine destined for a long future.
James Suckling 96: Intense blackberry and blueberry aromas as well as mushroom undertones. Violets, too. Sweet tobacco. Full-bodied and layered with polished tannins. Very long and beautiful. Give it two or three years to show what it has but already a beauty.
Wine Advocate 94+: Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2017 Pape Clement is composed of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon and 45% Merlot, with a nose that is slightly closed at this youthful stage—broody and earthy with baked plums, boysenberries and mulberries aromas plus touches of iron ore, tobacco, tapenade and charcuterie. The palate is medium-bodied and elegant with exquisitely ripe tannins, lovely energy and freshness and a long, mineral-laced finish.
James Suckling 96: Beautiful spice, tobacco, wet earth and blackcurrants with some raspberries. Aromatic and complex. Full-bodied, refined and layered with wonderful length and power. Yet, there’s always class and pretty length here. Seamless.
Vinous 95: The 2020 Pape Clément Rouge has an incredibly intense bouquet with multi-layered blackberry and bilberry fruit, cedar and black olive compote aromas. Hints of vanilla pod and black truffle emerge with time. The palate is medium-bodied with firm and quite assertive tannins that frame a huge weight of fruit (more than Domaine de Chevalier or Malartic-Lagravière tasted alongside). It's not a subtle Pessac-Léognan for sure, but there is adequate freshness and a sense of mineralité and tension on the finish. It will require at least a decade in bottle but long-term, this will be magnificent.
Wine Advocate 94+: 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.
James Suckling 98: Lots of blackberry, iodine and crushed stone here. Some black pepper and graphite, too. Full body and medium, fine tannins that have a powdery texture and open in the mouth. So much going on. Iodine and iron undertones with some raw mushroom bring you back for more. Muscular. This is for the cellar. Drink after 2027.