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The 1996 Clerc Milon was surprisingly closed on the nose, tightly wound at first but gently unfurling with scents of melted tar, desiccated orange peel and leather that are interwoven into the black fruit. I noticed a more pronounced tobacco scent developing with time. The palate is medium-bodied with a little more flesh than the 1996 d`Armailhac, spicy with cracked black pepper, Hoi Sin, bay leaf and Asian spice notes liberally sprinkled over the finish. Decant this for an hour before pouring folks.
In the 1855 Classification of Bordeaux, Clerc Milon was awarded the ranking of Fifth Growth. The wines consistently received recognition for their quality, terroir, as well as consistency and in 1970 Baron Philippe de Rothschild purchased the sixteen and a half hectres, which has now grown into 41 hectres within the north eastern region of Paulliac. Currently the vineyard has roughly half of the land planted for Cabernet Sauvignon, followed by Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and two touches of Petit Verdot and Carmenere, paired with sandy gravel and clay limestone. The farming practices are environmentally friendly with limited pesticides, helping the grapes stay consistent and true with their vibrant, tannic flavors.
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