Much as Henri Gouges blazed the trail in Burgundy, so did Auguste Clape in 1957 when he became the first in Cornas to bottle his own wine. Many of the vineyards used to create the top wine of the house were planted well before that time, and still to this day create benchmark wines of the region.
As many producers throughout France and even in the traditional village of Cornas have segmented their bottlings to reflect single vineyards, Clape blends from an impressive array of plots, including Chaillot, Reynard, La Côte, and Sabarotte which was inherited from Noël Verset. Some of these extend beyond a century in age, are extremely low-yielding, to which the Clape Cornas owes its incredible age-worthy quality.
The only developments since the early days have been a few new cuvées, including Cornas Renaissance, which highlights the younger vines of the plots (20-25 years of age, so hardly "young"), and Les Vins des Amis, which is from 40+ year vines of Syrah from both Cornas and just outside the village. A Cotes-du-Rhone rouge is also produced, sourcing from both Saint-Peray and another plot just below Cornas; this is also 100% Syrah, from 30-60 year old vines.
The red wines will see no new oak, ever - always fermented whole-cluster and eschewing the use of almost any press wine, resulting in the classic elegant texture.
Finally, there is also one white, a Saint-Peray of 80% Marsanne and 20% Roussanne from clay & granite soils. Primarily aged in foudres, this will occasionally spend time in tank or concrete, and will go through malo-lactic conversion.
Auguste passed in 2018 at the age of 93, but his son Pierre-Marie had already worked side-by-side with Auguste since 1989, and is today joined by his own son, Olivier. There are no plans to change the style or methods, as truly this house is a beacon of traditional excellence.