TN: Case of the Clape

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A. So
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TN: Case of the Clape

#1 Post by A. So » June 10th, 2019, 9:38 pm

Notes arranged in descending order of preference.
  • 2001 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    From magnum. This is the first bottle where we picked up some serial feral things going on. It's got that wild, animal thing going on in front of a backdrop of sweet black fruit. This feels far more primary, though there are definitely some nice matured elements here. Lots of syrah spice as well. The palate's got much of the same -- that wild thing and ripe black fruit, but the tannins feel less resolved than the 2004 (though that may well be the bottle size). Showing brilliantly, this probably edged out the 2010 as my wine of the night because of the extra maturity. I think in the long run the 2010 will probably be the better wine though. (93 pts.)
  • 2010 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    This was a close contender for wine of the night, but I think the maturity on the 2001 magnum gave it the upper hand. This is a Cornas that really fits the mold of what I want though; the fruit and structure here are in excellent balance, and there's plenty of both. Unlike the somewhat brutish 2009, the acidity here gives this far more elegance and liveliness, while there's still ample power from the large amount of fruit here. It's less black than the 2009 as well, and I can see a few analogues with the 2016 here. If the 2016 can put on some weight with bottle age, I think they could be similar wines. I hate to jump on the Robert Parker bandwagon, but this is one of the two times of day that the broken clock is right. (93 pts.)
  • 2004 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    One of the favourites tonight. I've loved where the 2004s have been in the last few years, and this bottle is no exception. The nose here is resolved, with a nice balance of primary fruit and some maturing characteristics. The most prominent attribute here is the silkiness -- it's a wine with the tannins so perfectly resolved and in balance with the structure. On the lighter side for sure, but absolutely fantastic to drink now. (93 pts.)
  • 2016 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    Pretty much a mostly-finished barrel sample. Stunning juice -- way better than the 2015 from last year (that was black fruit and clenched up) -- this is red-fruited, mineral, and acid-driven. It's stunning how well this is drinking now, and there's this youthful deliciousness that is just so compelling. If you have a few of these around, I'd strongly suggest popping one of these now before it shuts down; there's just something so enjoyable about tasting what will undoubtedly be a killer wine in its youth. (93 pts.)
  • 1996 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    This was a fully mature bottle of Clape, and next to the 1997, this showed more of a riper, fleshier character. The nose was incredibly aromatic, though there was still a fair bit of fruit here. A mild hint of smoke and a little earthy, with only a very mild bit of feral funk. For me, the palate had a good breadth, and while this is probably nearing the end of the maturity plateau, there's probably still a few good years of life left on this. I would still rather drink this sooner than later. (93 pts.)
  • 2006 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    This shares a bit of character with the 2001 (magnum), in its black fruit and sauvage character. There's an exotic, spicy thing with the nose here as well, but overall this wine just doesn't seem as compelling. It seems like this is just dialled down a little bit, and it may well be that this hasn't yet fully emerged from the initial shut-down phase (is that a thing?). Compared to the 2007 which was in the same flight, I found this more structure and at least for now, more complex. (93 pts.)
  • 2009 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    I don't get the hype on this wine. It's "just" a massive, ripe, and sweet Cornas, loaded with fruit. Like the 2007, the acidity is a little diminished, and while there's a huge tannic structure hidden behind all that flesh, there's nothing that I find particularly subtle here. It's a little too in-your-face, and the ripeness seems to have caused some of the nicer nuances of syrah to fade off. Certainly there's the material here for some long-term aging and this is one of the bottles I'm most curious about with more age. (93 pts.)
  • 2007 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    It's been a long while since I've tasted this wine and this showed far more primary and juicy and fruity than I would have expected. It's a surprisingly simple wine now, in that this is really all about the fruit. With the 2009 (which is more intense than this), these were the two fruit bomb wines. There's a hint of pepper here but there isn't too much nuance overall. The acidity and overall structure are more attenuated than I would expect; this is a wine with almost too much give. (93 pts.)
  • 1997 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    This was served next to the 1996, which was to me an all-round better wine, and in a better part of the drinking window. This bottle, while sound, was clearly starting to get long in the tooth. The palate and nose seemed a little more light, and the dirty elements seemed to be a little more pronounced here. The palate still had some body, but by and large this felt a little dilute, with the acidity showing prominently. (93 pts.)
  • 2013 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    Not quite as barrel-sample as the 2016, but while the intellectual exercise was certainly worthwhile, it's not a bottle I would open to drink now. There's actually a slightly bacterial(?) dirtiness on the nose that was quite persistent and never seemed to go away (this wasn't TCA though), but mostly this is an exercise in the standard Cornas black fruit. Almost certainly we've caught this at an odd time, and I'd be curious to see where this ends up. 2013 isn't a great vintage, so I doubt this will end up as a brilliant wine, but it should end up as a fairly solid workhorse vintage. Not sure it's one I would buy though. (93 pts.)
  • 2008 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    Corked. (93- pts.)
  • 1994 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
    Corked. (93- pts.)

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#2 Post by c fu » June 10th, 2019, 9:45 pm

Thought the same about 09, but I wonder if it just needs age to calm down. Doesn't hurt for a Clape to have a ton of fruit!
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#3 Post by Greg K » June 10th, 2019, 10:58 pm

Thanks for the notes. I really liked the 96 a few months back, which was pleasantly feral (a number of California wine fans were a lot less impressed). A shame about the 08 which I thought was lovely 6 months ago. Am hopeful your 97 was a bit of a tired bottle....
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#4 Post by Mark C Johnson » June 11th, 2019, 12:23 am

Really great notes. Thanks Adrian. I was hoping the 2003 would be there? Oh well.....
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#5 Post by Mark Henderson » June 11th, 2019, 2:20 am

Heartily agree with your comments on the 2004 Adrian. Had one a wee while back that was just delightful. The tannins beautifully resolved, a little hint of wildness, and lovely flow through the mouth. Felt like it was in its drinking plateau, and while there is little extra to be gained in keeping it, at the same time it's not going to fall over any time soon.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#6 Post by James Billy » June 11th, 2019, 2:41 am

Great notes. Thanks!

The 93 point joke needs to be retired. Better no score than a distracting humourous number IMHO.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#7 Post by Steve Heydemann » June 11th, 2019, 3:49 am

Nice notes. A really interesting tasting.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#8 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » June 11th, 2019, 4:13 am

I would have never thought that the 2010 was anywhere near approachable. I had the Renaissance a couple years back and it was a block wall. Both are in the deep recesses of my storage. Stuck back there, too, are the 2009s. The 2001 is outstanding!

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#9 Post by Todd F r e n c h » June 11th, 2019, 8:01 am

James Billy wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 2:41 am
Great notes. Thanks!

The 93 point joke needs to be retired. Better no score than a distracting humourous number IMHO.
If you want the great notes, you get the '93 points' joke - I believe the former is worth the latter. (already asked and answered, that's how I know)
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#10 Post by Jonathan Loesberg » June 11th, 2019, 8:43 am

Todd F r e n c h wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 8:01 am
James Billy wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 2:41 am
Great notes. Thanks!

The 93 point joke needs to be retired. Better no score than a distracting humourous number IMHO.
If you want the great notes, you get the '93 points' joke - I believe the former is worth the latter. (already asked and answered, that's how I know)
Just consider it as an anomalous punctuation, sort of like 30 back when there were printing presses. I've stopped noticing it, really.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#11 Post by Matthew King » June 11th, 2019, 9:42 am

Adrian gets grief but astute readers will appreciate the thread title and number of wines reviewed!

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#12 Post by Mark Y » June 11th, 2019, 2:02 pm

Are these even useful without a bolded score??
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#13 Post by Mark Y » June 11th, 2019, 2:04 pm

A. So wrote:
June 10th, 2019, 9:38 pm
[*]2008 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
Corked. (93- pts.)
[*]1994 Domaine Auguste Clape Cornas - France, Rhône, Northern Rhône, Cornas
Corked. (93- pts.)
[/list]
[rofl.gif] [rofl.gif] [rofl.gif]
Y.e.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#14 Post by Jonathan Loesberg » June 11th, 2019, 2:26 pm

Matthew King wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 9:42 am
Adrian gets grief but astute readers will appreciate the thread title and number of wines reviewed!
I agree about the tasting notes. The joke about Clape is a very old one.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#15 Post by Robert M yers » June 11th, 2019, 4:30 pm

Jonathan Loesberg wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 2:26 pm
Matthew King wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 9:42 am
Adrian gets grief but astute readers will appreciate the thread title and number of wines reviewed!
I agree about the tasting notes. The joke about Clape is a very old one.
That Bill guy is back?

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#16 Post by Dan Kravitz » June 11th, 2019, 4:34 pm

Robert Parker made that joke 20 years ago. neener

He was referring to the district in Languedoc, which of course at its best produces much better wines, not that many are noticing. [truce.gif] [bleh.gif] blahblah [wink.gif]

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#17 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » June 11th, 2019, 4:43 pm

Dan Kravitz wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 4:34 pm
Robert Parker made that joke 20 years ago. neener

He was referring to the district in Languedoc, which of course at its best produces much better wines, not that many are noticing. [truce.gif] [bleh.gif] blahblah [wink.gif]

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#18 Post by Matthew King » June 11th, 2019, 5:17 pm

Jonathan Loesberg wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 2:26 pm
Matthew King wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 9:42 am
Adrian gets grief but astute readers will appreciate the thread title and number of wines reviewed!
I agree about the tasting notes. The joke about Clape is a very old one.
I’m not praising the tired joke ... I just noted he reviewed 12 wines. So appropriate to talk about CASE of Clape ... twist on the well worn joke is all

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#19 Post by Dan Kravitz » June 11th, 2019, 6:11 pm

Robert.A.Jr. wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 4:43 pm
Dan Kravitz wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 4:34 pm
Robert Parker made that joke 20 years ago. neener

He was referring to the district in Languedoc, which of course at its best produces much better wines, not that many are noticing. [truce.gif] [bleh.gif] blahblah [wink.gif]

Dan Kravitz
HAHA, don’t you own that hooch?!?
This is a terrible insult! I do not own any vineyards in Languedoc, much less La Clape. I represent some vineyards in Languedoc, but not La Clape. I do however own a vineyard in Roussillon, which a whole nother kettle of worms.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#20 Post by Scott G r u n e r » June 11th, 2019, 7:03 pm

I am 93 points on the clape joke and the 93 points schtick
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#21 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » June 11th, 2019, 7:04 pm

I’m so yawn on the 93. I prefer other numerical combinations and cases of Clape.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#22 Post by A. So » June 11th, 2019, 8:31 pm

c fu wrote:
June 10th, 2019, 9:45 pm
Thought the same about 09, but I wonder if it just needs age to calm down. Doesn't hurt for a Clape to have a ton of fruit!
I'm not totally convinced the backbone's there for aging on the 2009, but I agree that fruit helps with the Clape style. Overall the wines were a lot less dirty and funky than I expected. For some reason I thought there'd be more dogs.
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#23 Post by James Billy » June 11th, 2019, 9:06 pm

Please note I did praise the tasting notes.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#24 Post by davidlown » June 12th, 2019, 4:29 am

I only had the top clape once - a 2015 and while it was better than average it most certainly to me wasn’t worth the money of other better than average 2015 and 2016 northern Rhône’s I’ve had. The other two things that makes me uninterested is it’s both filtered and fined and cellartracker reviews to me do not show a $100 bottle of wine. Just my $.02.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#25 Post by Robert.A.Jr. » June 12th, 2019, 4:41 am

davidlown wrote:
June 12th, 2019, 4:29 am
I only had the top clape once - a 2015 and while it was better than average it most certainly to me wasn’t worth the money of other better than average 2015 and 2016 northern Rhône’s I’ve had. The other two things that makes me uninterested is it’s both filtered and fined and cellartracker reviews to me do not show a $100 bottle of wine. Just my $.02.
Respectfully, that’s a pretty dismissive comment on a stalwart Northern Rhone when you have only had it once. And that was a baby in a pretty ripe vintage. I’m not encouraging you to go out and buy more - I’ve stopped paying the fare as well, but really more about me being 53 and these wines needing a long time - but if you get a chance, mature Clapes can be pretty darn fantastic. And their basic bottlings, like Vin de Amis, are incredible values.

I would never base my buying decisions on CT. They are aggregated scores by the masses of users regardless of stylistic preferences, experience, etc. Unique wines generally don’t show well on CT. Now throw a Harlan on CT, and everyone goes ga-ga, yet I don’t like it at all. Gracefully, I don’t post scores on CT.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#26 Post by Dan Kravitz » June 12th, 2019, 5:45 pm

IIRC, Parker's original comment was:
"Do you want a case of La Clape? You should."

AFAIK the only joke he's ever made, and I've spent some time with him and like him.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#27 Post by Richard Albert » June 12th, 2019, 6:12 pm

Huh? 53 is puppyish for man in good health which I assume you are, just stay away from the shores of your local waterways.
Hell, I would take 53 any day of the rest of my life so I can see my 2005 Bord, Burgs and Rhones truly mature.
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#28 Post by Jonathan Loesberg » June 13th, 2019, 7:09 am

If Parker made the joke about the wine region in 1999, I'm pretty sure I beat him to it in referring to the Cornas back in the late 80s. And I was surely not the first. My guess is that human memory is not older than this joke.

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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#29 Post by Claus Jeppesen » June 13th, 2019, 11:14 am

Matthew King wrote:
June 11th, 2019, 9:42 am
Adrian gets grief but astute readers will appreciate the thread title and number of wines reviewed!
I noticed the elegant reference from the board darling Adrian
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Re: TN: Case of the Clape

#30 Post by Vince T » June 13th, 2019, 12:28 pm

Perhaps that 2013 just needs to be paired with some Zithromax
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