2016 Clos Apalta
The Marnier-Lapostolles hold a special place in Chile's winemaking history: they were the first producers to earn a perfect 100 Point score, for the 2014 Clos Apalta.
The famed French grape-growing family first came to Chile in 1994, recognizing the country's incredible potential to produce structured, elegant Bordeaux-styled wines. They set up shop in the revered Apalta region, where ungrafted old vines date back to 1920 and nutrient-poor soils create wines of rich character and complexity. In just two decades, and with the help of celebrated vintner Michel Rolland, they have completely changed the world's perception of just how good Chilean wine can be.
Composed predominantly of Carménère with touches of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, the 99 Point 2016 Clos Apalta opens with dense aromas of black berries, dark cherry, cracked peppercorns, and dusty earth. The palate brings opulent flavors of blueberry, smoke, and cocoa, which are layered with hints of tobacco and leather that unwind beautifully as the bottle opens up. Aging in new French barriques for 26 months smooths out the tannins and adds an other-worldly silkiness to the wine, which finishes with both power and grace.
“This is really focused and refined with fantastic, dried flowers and dark berries. Dried-lavender and mint undertones. Medium-to full-bodied with refined and polished tannins that are all together and so focused. Really integrated and melted together on the palate. Compact and very linear. Please give this two or three years to come completely together, but it's already breathtaking. Better to drink after 2022.” – 99 Points, James Suckling