A massive Yquem, this has a dense palate that is almost chewy like a red. Full and very sweet, with notes of dried apricot, pineapple, and papaya on the palate. Long, with a vanilla-coconut tart finish. What a wine, voluptuous, sexy, and luscious. 147 grams of RS. Pull the cork after 2015. 98 points, jamessuckling.com (5/2012).
Subtle and racy, with lemon rind, vanilla cream and dried pineapple. Very spicy and intense. Full-bodied, with great length and flavour. Electrified yet refined, with medium sweetness and a wonderful finish. I love the class of this, and the length. Has afterburners. Best after 2010. 98 points, Wine Spectator.
Squarely on the tropical side of the spectrum, with mango, papaya and pineapple fruit laced with a marmalade note. Long and very caressing through the finish, but never heady or overpowering, as orange pâte de fruit, ginger and singed almond accents lend cut and precision. Shows the heat of the vintage while retaining energy and drive. Impressive. 97 points, winespectator.com (2014).
…an intriguing bouquet with Manuka honey, quince, honeycomb and a touch of nougat... The palate is unctuous right from the start: gloopy in texture with hedonistic, ripe, honeyed fruit laced with orange zest and a strong spicy note on the finish… This is certainly the finest 2003 Sauternes. 94 points, Wine Advocate (6/2014).
…complexity on the nose… Marzipan. Richness. Citrus. Nerve. Really deep flavours with good acidity. Tense. Yes! 19/20 points, jancisrobinson.com (3/2008).
The initial baby fat from the low acidity is barely noticeable today. The wine is now popping with its perfect combination of freshness and honeyed sweetness. The layers of honey-drenched tropical fruits, apricots, white peach, vanilla and a hint of custard taste, smell and feel great. Drink this now for its youthful pleasure or wait decades for an entirely different experience. It's a beauty… especially when you factor in its high quality and style. 97 points, Wine Cellar Insider (9/2016).
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.