Château L'Eglise-Clinet - Pomerol
Wine, a whole art
Denis Durantou is a winemaker as discreet as his wines are rare. His production is confidential and he deliberately keeps himself away from the media, going so far as to select the places he visits. The addresses he particularly likes are those where his wines and the works of his wife, the painter Marie Reillhac, are received with the same deference. This is why the artistic universe is so present at the owner of Château L'Eglise-Clinet in Pomerol.
Art is even an integral part of the Durantou family. Denis takes this passion from his father and today he shares it with his wife and one of their three daughters, Alix, an art historian. It is not uncommon to hear Denis, known for having a sense of the formula, use the lexical field of art to describe his profession as a winemaker. "I paint with the nuances of astringency," he says poetically. The art enters the tasting room where Marie exhibits her paintings, offering visitors an additional moment of contemplation.
"Craftsman rather than artist"
However, Denis does not feel like a wine artist:
"The artist is in a solitary process. I am not solitary. I have a team with me. Being dependent on the climate, on the tossing of a coin with the weather where the result is not always up to expectations, takes away from him a certain freedom of creation. He doesn't have the choice of materials either, even if he chooses how to work them and make the most of them. Denis thus sees himself as a craftsman rather than an artist, attentive to every detail and forced to respect certain techniques.
He gives freedom to those who taste and love his wines. He also likes to remind us that if the wines are made by him, they are aged by the person who consumes them. They must be evidences with caressing and tender tannins, and must give the freedom to forget them in the cellar. For wine must be the pleasure of discovery but also the pleasure of reunion, but Denis has the talent of the artist to create works that are sources of emotion as well as the genius of the person who masters his subject. Denis has always wanted to make wine. Good wine. A goal he has brilliantly achieved.
"Always illustrate the vintages better"
His quest for the Holy Grail today is to always better illustrate the vintages. To go towards more aromatic persistence, with tannic wines without looking like it. With this eternal concern for precision, he makes it his duty to present a wine every year. And although he refuses to be an artist, his wines are remarkable creations whose greatest masterpieces are, according to him, to be found in the vintages to come.