Pessac-Léognan - Chateau Pape-Clement
Château Pape Clément is a Bordeaux wine from the Pessac-Léognan appellation, ranked among the Crus Classés for red and white wine in the Classification of Graves wine of 1959.
The first harvest took place in 1252. For more than 750 years, therefore, Château Pape Clément has been producing fine wines on the same terroir. At this time, it was called Domaine de la Mothe. It was purchased at the end of December 1299 by Gaillard de Goth, son of a famous family from the south of Bordeaux. This purchase was made at the request of Bertrand de Goth, who had just been appointed Archbishop of Bordeaux, and for this reason could not accede to the property. Bertrand de Goth became bishop of Saint-Bertrand de Comminges, then archbishop of Bordeaux in 1299.
Jean-Baptiste Clerc was one of the owners who marked the history of the estate. He was behind the existing Château, in the neo-Gothic style dating from 1864. Under his aegis, more than 30 hectares was replanted and this same year, the property received the grand ministerial medal awarded in the competition for the most outstanding vineyard. Under Clerc’s management, Château Pape Clément soon became one of the best-known growths in the Gironde. On 8 June 1937, a violent hail storm destroyed almost all the vineyards of Château Pape Clément and it was in 1939 that it was bought by Paul Montagne, who decided to restore the vineyard and the cellar to return them to the status they deserved. The culmination of his efforts and the quality of the Grand Vin were finally to be recognised on the creation of the classification of Grands Crus Classés de Graves in 1959.
The vineyard area consists of 32.5 hectares, 30 of which are planted with grape varieties of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot. The remaining plots are cultivated with white varieties of 45% Sauvignon blanc, 45% Sémillon and 10% Muscadelle.
The Grand vin, Chateau Pape Clément, is produced annually in 7,000 cases of red wine and 350 cases of dry white wine. Additionally there are produced second wines Le Clémentin du Pape Clément and Le Prélat du Pape Clément.
The introduction of a second wine in the 1980s, was widely credited with allowing the estate to increase their focus on the quality of their Grand vin, by being more selective in which grapes were used. Today the Grand vin is typically composed of two-thirds Cabernet Sauvignon with Merlot making up the remaining third.
The non-cru classé white wine will typically be composed of equal amounts of Sauvignon blanc and Sémillon, depending on the vintage.