"Pale colour. Fragrant honey, lemon glacé aromas with hints of marzipan and herbs. Generously proportioned palate with attractive grapefruit, mandarin, crystalline lemon flavours, fine supple sweet textures and underlying toasty oak. Finishes chalky and sweet with persistent fresh acidity. Pretty classic. Tasted at the Union des Grand Crus."
97 points - Andrew Caillard
"The 2016 Coutet has an intriguing bouquet, more exotic than I have noticed in the past, scents of tangerine and dried pineapple, not quite the mineral drive that I expect from Coutet. The palate is serviced back to normal: a very fine line of acidity, great delineation, taut and focused with a brisk and precise finish. I just hope that the aromatics get their house in order during the barrel maturation so that it matches the palate. At the moment, I will be prudent with my score."
91-93 points - Neal Martin
"Oily and dense with lots of sliced-cooked-pineapple, honey and light spice character. Full body and a long and spicy finish. Lasts a long time on the palate."
94-95 points - James Suckling
"The 2016 Coutet is bold, immediate and delicious. Ripe pear, tangerine, spice, mint and dried flowers build into the soft, caressing finish. This is an especially discreet, understated style with less overt sweetness than is found in many other wines."
89-92 points - Antonio Galloni
"RS 153 g/l, TA 3.8 g/l. Correct but somewhat restrained nose, particularly in comparison with Clos Haut-Peyraguey. Just a little dull. Not the juiciest. Not the sweetest. Very youthful."
16.5+/20 points - Jancis Robinson
"The vibrant, tropical fruit-coulis character draws you into this concentrated and elegant Barsac. Then the crisp acidity and a wave of lemon and mineral character comes through, driving the finish out in the direction of the horizon. Drink or hold."
95 Points, James Suckling
Sauternes is home to arguably the most prestigious and long-lived sweet wines in the world. Located 65 km south of the city of Bordeaux at the southern tip of the Graves, the appellation has 2100 ha of vineyards planted on flat, alluvial gravels overlying thick layers of limestone. Although viewed as one appellation, Sauternes actually consists of five communes; Barsac, Bommes, Fargues, Preignanc, and Sauternes with Barsac also a designated appellation in its own right. What makes Sauternes unique is its special mesoclimate caused by the confluence of the Ciron and the Garonne rivers.
The region experiences evening mists in autumn which set in until late morning and are subsequently burnt off by warm sunny afternoons. It is precisely these conditions that provide the ideal environment for the growth of botrytis cinerea – a fungus that attacks the grapes, causing them to dehydrate leaving sweet shrivelled fruit, ideal for sweet wine production. Sauternes wines are made predominantly from Sémillon with Sauvignon Blanc with small amounts of Muscadelle. Golden in colour with enticing aromas and flavours of honey, acacia, stone-fruit, candied citrus and marmalade, classic Sauternes is rich, unctuous and beautifully balanced by fresh acidity. Capable of long-ageing, the wines turn deep amber with age, taking on more tertiary caramel flavours over time.