Cornas: Domaine Clape 2017
"Lastly, the 2017 Cornas showed incredibly well. A great vintage for the Northern Rhône, it has textbook aromas and flavors. Due to yields, no Renaissance cuvée was produced, so readers need to grab bottles of this while they can. Revealing a deep purple color as well a sweet nose of dark fruits, currants, ground pepper, bloody meat, and iron, the 2017 hits the palate with full-bodied richness, a powerful, dense mid-palate, huge minerality, and enough tannins to warrant 7-8 years of bottle age.
Drink 2020-2028. 95+/100."
Jeb Dunnuck - JebDunnuck.com
The principal bottling of Domaine Clape's Cornas is made from an assemblage of 5 or 6 different parcels of vines whose grapes are vinified separately and raised in large oak foudres for at least 12 months before blending.
Often impenetrable when young, it is a quintessential Northern Rhône Syrah that can take a decade to come into its own, but then reveals an alluring bouquet of briary, hedgerow berries preceding a persistent palate of red and black fruit, spices, minerals, game, leather and minerals.
It is a great food wine ideally suited to grills and daubes - venison or wild boar both being classic accompaniments.
|Style||Red Wine, Sec, Full-bodied, Non Sparkling|
|Wine Region||Rhône, Cornas|
|Grape Variety (Cépage)||Syrah|
|Food & Wine Matching||Beef, Casserole, Mushrooms, Pheasant and Game|
|Cellarage||An unashamed Vin de Garde that will age well for 5 to 20+ years.|
|Vinification||The grapes are picked at optimum ripeness from 25 to 60 year old vines, grown on the south west facing granite hillside. Circa seven days of fermentation (with stems) at up to 34 degrees C., is followed by 3 to 7 days maceration to extract optimum tannins. Malolactic fermentation then takes place in wood followed by an 18 month élevage. Each lieu-dit is vinified separately and assemblage takes place just prior to bottling to produce the complex and distinctive house style.|
|Alcohol By Volume (%)||14|
The Clapes farm 5.38 hectares of vines at Cornas with further parcels classed as Côtes du Rhône and Saint-Péray. Although there have been Clapes at Cornas for at least 250 years, Auguste (1925-2018) was a first generation vigneron, having acquired his vines through marriage to his wife Henriette. His first vintage was in 1949 and he was the first independent vigneron in Cornas to begin domaine bottling his own wines in the early 1950s. Auguste was joined by his (then 40 year-old) son Pierre in 1989 and grandson Olivier in 2002. The entire Clape operation is infused with a sense of cautious modesty and genial simplicity – they have secured a profound international reputation by consistently producing top quality wine.
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