2002 Clos Les Lunelles (Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux)
by JJ Buckley Fine Wines
On Sale $24.94 (reg. $39.94)
Here's a fantastic value that fans of mature Bordeaux will not want to pass up! This Castillon Côtes de Bordeaux estate belongs to Gerard Perse, high-profile proprietor of the illustrious Chateau Pavie. And while it would be a stretch to say that Clos Les Lunelles will compete with Pavie, it does share many attributes as its big sibling, in its terroir and winemaking style. Better yet, it’ll cost you a mere fraction of Pavie’s asking price, and today we’ve got this 15-year-old overachiever of the appellation for under $25 a bottle!
Clos Les Lunelles is the star property of this value-driven appellation. Robert Parker calls the estate “the reference point winery for the Cotes de Castillon”, and that’s saying something. Perse is not the only right bank heavy-hitter in town, with numerous other major players also recognizing the potential of the terroir and making wine here. Domaine de l’A is the home property of Stéphane Derenoncourt, Aiguilhe belongs to Stephan von Neipperg of Canon La Gaffelière, and even François Thienpont of Le Pin has the little-known Goubau.
The connection between Clos Les Lunelles and Pavie is palpable. The two vineyards are barely five kilometers apart, and Clos Les Lunelles lies on the highest point in Castillon, an extension of the Saint Emilion plateau known as the Saint Colombe plateau. As at the other family properties – Pavie Decesse, Bellevue Mondotte and Monbousquet to mention just a few – the Perse signature style is apparent at Clos Les Lunelles. Yields are tiny, the wines are bold, and production is minuscule. Put it all together and you get, per Parker, “Castillon at its richest, most concentrated, and blockbuster best.”
Speaking of Parker, he calls this one “a beautiful success for a right bank 2002”, while also suggesting that 2002s in general "will find a place with shrewd consumers who drink wines rather than labels, and buy quality as opposed to vintage reputations." Clos Les Lunelles 2002 is a smart buy, particularly vis à vis some of the better-known “labels” of the Right Bank.
Very few of us could afford – or justify - stocking Pavie as a house wine. Clos Les Lunelles 2002, however, is an entirely different story. It’s been perfectly cellared, it’s full of that Perse influence and it comes in at a killer price! Fans of the Pavie style, if not the price, should be all over this one. Cheers!