Owner: Denis Durantou
Vineyard area: six hectares
Average annual production: 18,000 bottles p/a
Standard blend: 85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet
Other wines: Petite Eglise
Small but significant Eglise Clinet is the progeny of Pomerol’s Clos l’Eglise and Chateau Clinet. Plots from both properties were merged in 1882 when the estates’ owners, Mauleon Rouchut and the Constant family, decided to embark on a joint venture. Initially, the wines were sold as Clos l’Eglise Clinet, but this was shortened to its present form in the mid-20th century.
By the 1940s, the estate was owned by the grandparents of current proprietor Denis Durantou. The family did not live at the chateau at the time and they made most of their money from their dairy farm in Coutras. With their energy focused on bovine and butter, the family arranged for Pierre Lasserre of Chateau Rene to manage the estate in return for a 50 per cent share of the yearly profits. This arrangement came to an end in the 1980s when Denis Durantou took the reins.
The 2012 vintage
Eglise Clinet’s reputation has gone from strength to strength. Several critics cited its 2009 and 2010 as the wine of the vintage, and the chateaux repeated this success earlier in the year when the 2012 was the only wine to receive a potential 100 point in-barrel score from Robert Parker. It received high critic scores across the board; James Suckling awarded the wine 94-95 points and described it as “top notch […] full bodied, and grows on the palate ever so steadily.”
Despite the market’s downturn, the most recent ten physical vintages of Eglise Clinet have performed remarkably well over the past year. On average, the wines are up by 10% since April 2012, with the high-scoring 2009 leading the way (up 45%).
As shown below, the Right Bank 100 Index has far outperformed its wider parent index, the Liv-ex Bordeaux 500, over the last five years – and Eglise Clinet has been one of the wines pushing it up.