“An atypical and outstanding vintage!” – Fabrice Darmaillacq, Technical Directo
2016 was a year of contrasts at Chateau Clarke, with extreme weather conditions (a very rainy winter and an extremely dry summer), the major threat from fungal diseases and, above all, an Indian summer beyond our wildest dreams that produced exceptional fruit suitable for making great wine.
Fermentation: The grapes are put into vats via gravity flow, followed by cold soaking and fermentation in both oak and stainless steel tanks. Moderate extraction adapted to each vat by pumping over and delestage (rack and return).
A beautiful crimson color with a deep purple rim. The extremely complex nose presents subtly roasted notes with sappy cedar aromas mingled with notes of black currant and cherry. On the palate, there are velvety tannins enhanced by magnificent freshness through to a long, delightful finish.
- Varietal Composition:
- 70% Merlot
- 30% Cabernet Sauvignon
- Aging: 16 months, 100% in barrels (two-thirds new and one-third second fill)
- Alcohol: 14.0%
This is excellent, really feels much deeper, richer and more deeply textured in its fruit expression than any others in the line-up. Intense cassis and bilberry flavours, and although this is still Merlot dominant in the blend, the Médoc character of the Cabernet Sauvignon and the tannic frame is clear. - Decanter Magazine 93 points
Currant and cherry aromas are underlined with iron and rust. Medium-to full-bodied, firm and chewy yet polished and poised. Tension and style at the end. - James Suckling 92 points
The 2016 Château Clarke has some obvious oak but makes up for it with ample fruit. Deep ruby/purple-colored, with loads of black cherry and cassis fruit intermixed with graphite and leather, it has solid purity, medium body, fine tannins, and impressive length on the finish. It’s a serious wine from Listrac to enjoy over the coming decade. - Jeb Dunnuck 90 points