February and March were rather dry, causing the vine to bud earlier than usual, though the lack of rain in the second half of March probably slowed this advance. Shoot tips appeared between 27 and 29 March depending on the variety. Cold and wet weather in April halted the vegetation cycle and hampered spring work in the vineyard. May was quite the opposite – hot and dry, with no rain at all during the first 26 days – giving the younger vines no respite.
Mid-flowering was reached between 1 and 4 June, three to five days earlier than the average. Hot weather in July caused veraison to begin on the 21st, and the process was completed under favourable conditions during a very hot and dry August. By 15 August, veraison had taken place across all varieties. 12 days of very hot weather in August with temperatures in excess of 30° C caused some burning, but the damage was of little consequence.
Although the growth cycle was kept under perfect control throughout the year, rain in September and October disturbed the harvest, requiring strict selection both in the vineyard and at the winery.
A very dense, dark garnet red, the colour has evolved as one would expect.
Initially discreet, the nose opens with airing to reveal warm aromas of black cherry, humus and delicate oak on vanilla and cigar-box notes.
A supple attack paves the way for powerful, fully mature tannins. The palate, substantial and invigorating, shows good balance, leading into a fresh and mineral finish.
Clerc Milon 1998 has already matured well but can still keep for another 5 to 8 years.
Varietal mix 1998 Vintage