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Sauternes Wines

Sauternes Wines

Sauternes Wines

The Sauternes Wine

The white wines of Bordeaux are sometimes sadly looked over, as the region is primarily known for their almost absurdly powerful and delicious reds. However, if you like a refreshing, sweet treat on a late summer evening or you wish to complete your journey through Bordeaux’s finest wines, you should not skip a Sauternes bottle or two. Made from a carefully balanced mixture of Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle grape varietals, this wine boasts an almost supernatural sweetness. This sugary nature can be attributed to the presence of noble rot that can cause the grapes to visually resemble raisins in a way.

We would completely understand if a single taste of fine Sauternes brought visible tears of joy to your eyes, as the flavor is just that magnificent. As you swirl the liquid gold in your mouth, an orchestral performance echoes on, with a grounding double bass of honey and the sharpness and acidity of a passionate violin solo. Notes of peach, apricot and nut punctuate the experience, sending you sky-high with inspiration and pure, emotional bliss.

If you’re looking for a place to start exploring Sauternes, allow us to point the way. It is our raison d'être to point you towards the most awe-inspiring, glorious wines this region has to offer, and if you’ve ever doubted the untouchable prestige of Bordeaux, those doubts will be swiftly quaffed under a torrential avalanche of flavor and emotion. Let us open the door to a whole new world together.
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1983 nairac Dessert
As low as $65.00
1985 ducru beaucaillou Bordeaux Red

A wine of extraordinary charm and elegance, the dark garnet-colored 1985 Ducru-Beaucaillou has a floral, cedary nose intermixed with red and black currants as well as flowers. The wine is fully mature and soft, with beautiful concentration and purity. It is not a blockbuster, and certainly not nearly as powerful and massive as the 1986, but it is certainly much more seductive. This wine should continue to drink well for at least another 10-15 years. Anticipated maturity: Now-2012. Last tasted, 5/02.Robert Parker | 92 RP

92
RP
As low as $299.00
1986 Ducru Beaucaillou

(Château Ducru-Beaucaillou (St. Julien) Re-Furbished at the Château in 2011) Ducru-Beaucaillou has recently re-released several vintages from the era when there was some sort of TCA contamination (in my opinion) in the cellars here, such as there was in Cuné’s property of Contino. The refurbished bottles can be distinguished by a back label that gives all of the details. The first releases of 1986 Ducru had been plagued by some sort of TCA taint, but the underlying wine was always very strong, and the re-furbished bottles from the estate are stellar. The wine offers up a pure, precise and very deep nose of sweet cassis, cigar ash, a very complex base of gravelly soil tones, a nice touch of cedar and a topnote of cigar wrapper. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, complex and tangy, with outstanding focus and bounce, a lovely core of fruit, ripe, well-measured tannins and a long, complex and very soil-driven finish. This is a classic vintage of Ducru-Beaucaillou in the making, and the re-released bottles are stellar. The wine is just starting to drink, but like so many of the top 1986 wines from the Médoc, it still has room to grow and would continue to benefit from further cellaring. (Drink between 2023-2075).John Gilman | 96 JGA monster in its infancy. Almost black in color, with intense cassis, herb and mint aromas and superrich, dense cassis and licorice flavors. May last forever.Wine Spectator | 95 WSMedium brick in color with a touch of brown, the 1986 Ducru-Beaucaillou reveals growing notes of dried mulberries, kirsch and raisin cake with nuances of celery salt, dried bay leaves, truffles and charcuterie plus hints of old leather sofa and fallen leaves. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has quite a powerful structure with firm, chewy tannins and bold freshness supporting the muscular, dried berries flavors, finishing long with a dried mint kick.Readers should note that this vintage fell within a notoriously patchy period at Ducru, where the cellar is likely to have fallen victim to TCA or a TCA-like taint, and it appears some bottles were impacted from 1986 to 1994. By 1995, the chateau had a completely new vat room/cellar and the problem ceased. Therefore, there could be some bottle variation to be had with this vintage. This bottle, however, was pristine, tasted at the chateau.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94 RP

96
JG
As low as $319.00
1988 dyquem Dessert White

The 1988 is a backward-styled Yquem, built along the lines of the extraordinary 1975. With a honeyed, smoky, orange/coconut/pineapple-scented nose, this powerful wine possesses full body, layers of highly concentrated, extracted flavors, considerable botrytis, and a sensational finish. Last tasted 12/97.Robert Parker | 99 RPThe 1988 Yquem is a vintage that I have drunk with enormous pleasure on numerous occasions. This last bottle was the perfect ending to a horizontal of 1988 Roumier wines at Noizé. It was a late harvest that lasted until All Saints Day (1 November). A total of 6 tries were necessary through the vineyard, each gifting plenty of botrytised fruit. Deep amber in hue, it offers wonderful aromas of mandarin, orange blossom, wax resin and a light adhesive scent. I was actually quite taken aback but the splendid delineation and life-affirming vitality of this example, hints of crème brûlée interwoven through the honeyed fruit, Clementine and hints of caramelised pear. It fans out wonderfully on the finish. Without doubt, this was the best bottle of 1988 Yquem that I have encountered.Vinous Media | 96 VMBroad and soft, with creamed apricot, mango, date, honey, caramel and marzipan notes, all framed by toasted brioche and musk accents. The flattering finish lets orange curd and flan details glide through. A touch shy on tension, but shows lovely range.—Non-blind Yquem vertical (July 2014). Drink now through 2030. 6,500 cases made.Wine Spectator | 94 WS(Château d’Yquem (Sauternes)) This particular bottle of ’88 Yquem was drunk at a big event at Château Cheval Blanc a few years ago and I wondered at the time if it was a slightly advanced bottle. The wine was already fairly dark in color for the vintage and offered up an almost tertiary bouquet of orange peel, crème brulée, honey, apricot, almonds, a lovely and complex base of soil tones and buttery new oak. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, complex and surprisingly evolved for Yquem from a good, racy vintage like 1988, with a deep core, modest acids and very good length and grip on the finish. This was so stunning in its youth that I have to believe that this bottle was somehow a bit forward. (Drink between 2012-2045)John Gilman | 90+ JG

99
RP
As low as $269.00
1989 ducru beaucaillou Bordeaux Red

Harvest took place this year from 11th to 24th September. The wine was aged for around 12 months in two-thirds new oak. Pale to medium brick colored, the 1989 Ducru-Beaucaillou sashays out of the glass with pretty notes of dried flowers, fallen leaves and dusty soil over a core of warm figs, dried cherries, prunes and spice cake plus wafts of unsmoked cigars and powdered cinnamon. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is still seductively rich with a lively line of soft, silt-like tannins, finishing long and wonderfully savory.Readers should note that this vintage fell within a notoriously patchy period at Ducru, where the cellar is likely to have fallen victim to TCA or a TCA-like taint, and it appears some bottles were impacted from 1986 to 1994. By 1995, the chateau had a completely new vat room/cellar and the problem ceased. Therefore, there could be some bottle variation to be had with this vintage. This bottle, however, was pristine, tasted at the chateau.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 92 RPDelivers lots of tanned leather and spices, with very ripe fruit, from dried strawberry to raisin, turning to jam. Full-bodied, offering a very fresh palate of exotic fruit, currant and raisin as well as silky and polished tannins. So long and beautiful. Why wait? But it has a long life ahead. There is a lot of bottle variation in this wine due to TCA issues, but this is a beauty.—’89/’99 Bordeaux blind retrospective (2009). Drink now.Wine Spectator | 92 WSThe 1989 Ducru-Beaucaillou is showing some bricking on the rim, although the core remains quite dark. This has an attractive bouquet with lovely tobacco-infused black fruit and touches of black truffle and morels. There is something very gentle here but also intense. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannin and a fine bead of acidity, a little meaty and bloody in style with maybe just a hint of brettanomyces toward the finish. But it seems to complement and enhance the wine. Tasted from an ex-cellar bottle at the château.Vinous Media | 90 VM

92
WS
As low as $230.00
1989 dyquem Dessert White

A remarkable, profound example of how top Sauternes wines age, with intense notes of marmalade on the nose. Although it seemed there were some hints of passerillage, Sandrine Garbay confirmed no dried grapes made it into the blend. A subtle note of botrytis adds even more to the aromatics. Amber in hue, the palate is laden with complex flavours of tropical fruits, citrus notes of lime and orange zest, all supported by cleansing acidity and an intriguing mineral undertow. This still has at least 20 years ahead of it, perhaps a lot more. From a year where the growing season was very warm, before a cool and rain-affected September and much cooler October. 80% Sémillon, 20% Sauvignon Blanc. Residual Sugar: 127g/L. (Drink between 2022-2040)0.Decanter | 100 DECThe 1989 Yquem is my favourite of the triumvirate and this bottle was stellar. It explodes from the glass with scents of quince, acacia, honeysuckle, saffron and wild heather (a trait that I have observed previously). What marks this out is the stunning delineation. The palate is medium-bodied with tangerine, fig, marmalade and quince. A livewire Yquem with enormous depth and intensity, a bit more swagger than the 1988, a bit more precision-tooled than the 1990. Fabulous. Tasted blind at a private dinner in Bordeaux.Vinous Media | 99 VMThe favorite sweet wine of millionaires, Chateau d’Yquem has, not unexpectedly, turned in a brilliant effort with their newly released 1989. It is a large-scaled, massively rich, unctuously-textured wine that should evolve effortlessly for a half century or more. It does not reveal the compelling finesse and complexity of the 1988 or 1986, but it is a far heavier, richer wine than either of those vintages. It is reminiscent of the 1976, with additional fat and glycerin. The wine is extremely alcoholic and rich, with a huge nose of smoky, honey-covered coconuts and overripe pineapples and apricots. As with most young vintages of Yquem, the wine’s structure is barely noticeable. These wines are so highly extracted and rich yet approachable young, it is difficult to believe they will last for 50 or more years. The 1989 is the richest Yquem made in the eighties, and it has an edge in complexity over the powerhouse 1983. It remains to be seen whether this wine will develop the extraordinary aromatic complexity possessed by the promising 1988 and 1986 Yquems. Last tasted 11/97.Robert Parker | 97 RPVery classy and beautiful, packed with botrityzed flavors. Marvelous blend of vanilla, cream, tobacco-box notes, with a lot of oak on it for now but also loads of pure, clean and elegant fruit. An infant that will age for a long time.--Yquem vertical. Best after 2020. 12,500 cases made.Wine Spectator | 97 WS

100
DEC
As low as $285.00
1989 rieussec Dessert White

Dense and amazing with a thick mouthfeel and so much dried apple, apricot, and lemon character. It's long, sweet and intense. So much going on here. Love it. Love the 1989 vintage for Sauternes.James Suckling | 97 JSThe 1989 Rieussec is a fat, rich, broad-shouldered wine, with great depth and richness, and a formidably high alcohol content. I did not detect as much botrytis as I would have hoped. Nevertheless, it is a blockbuster, massive wine in the style of the richest 1983s. Its evolution should be fascinating to follow. Anticipated maturity: 1998-2015. Last tasted, 1/93.Robert Parker | 94 RP(Château Rieussec (Sauternes)) The 1989 Rieussec is drinking very well indeed at age twenty-seven, but it is already well into its plateau and is not likely to be one of the more long-distance vintages from this era at the estate. The nose is quite honeyed in its blend of apricot, orange, chalky soil tones, butterscotch, toasted coconut, incipient notes of walnuts and plenty of the aforementioned honey. On the palate the wine is deep. full-bodied, complex and already getting quite tertiary in profile, with crisp framing acids and very good length and grip on the fully mature, but still vibrant finish. This is a very good time to be drinking this vintage of Rieussec. (Drink between 2016-2026).John Gilman | 92 JGLively, complex, fresh aromas of tropical fruit, honey and spicy oak. Sweet and viscous in the middle palate; kept fresh by apple and pear notes and harmonious acidity. Very concentrated and deep. Very long on the aftertaste; has the sheer material to buffer its alcohol. Rieussec switched to later bottling with this vintage: 30 rather than 24 months after the harvest.Vinous Media | 92 VM

94
RP
As low as $94.95
1990 dyquem Dessert White

1990: An extraordinary effort, Yquem’s 1990 is a rich and fabulously superb, sweet wine. This wine also possesses lots of elegance and finesse. The wine’s medium gold color is accompanied by an exceptionally sweet nose of honeyed tropical fruits, peaches, coconut, and apricots. High quality, subtle toasty oak is well-integrated. The wine is massive on the palate, with layers of intensely ripe botrytis-tinged, exceptionally sweet fruit. Surprisingly well-integrated acidity, and a seamless, full-bodied power and richness have created a wine of remarkable harmony and purity. Certainly it is one of the richest Yquems I have ever tasted, with 50-100 years of potential longevity. An awesome Yquem! Anticipated maturity: 2003-2050+.Robert Parker | 99 RPHard to contain this wine within the contours of the glass - this is exuberant, concentrated and luscious. Full of blood orange, nectarine, saffron, touches of caramelised ginger, truffle and crème brûlée. A see-saw of zesty acidity and luscious sweetness, this is a beautiful wine that still has decades ahead of it. Owned by the Lur Saluces family at the time, clearly showing why Yquem stands in its own category in the appellation. Drinking Window 2021 - 2050.Decanter | 98 DECTruly superb. Yellow with a gold hue. Intense spice, honey and dried orange peel aromas.Full-bodied, very sweet and very alive. Vibrant Sauternes that goes on and on on the palate. Doesn’t get much better than this. Beautiful now,but wait.--1990 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2010. 18,750 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WSFull-blown aromas of caramel, toffee, honey, white chocolate and damp earth; slightly Tokaj-like. Hugely concentrated and layered in the mouth; extraordinary sweetness cut by harmonious acidity. As with the best vintages of Yquem, the finish goes on for a minute or more. Stains, and stuns, the palate. A huge wine, surprisingly extravagant on the nose (earlier bottles have been far more restrained) but completely unevolved and a bit musclebound on the palate. May ultimately merit a higher score.Vinous Media | 94+ VM

99
RP
As low as $269.00
1995 ducru beaucaillou Bordeaux Red

Proprietor Bruno Borie noted this was a somewhat unusual blend this year: 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot. After this vintage, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot would no longer be included in the blend. Medium to deep brick in color, the 1995 Ducru-Beaucaillou explodes from the glass with bombastic notes of Indian spices, plum preserves, fruitcake and dried figs with nuances of potpourri, star anise, bouquet garni and espresso. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is chock-full of exotic spices and preserved black fruits, framed by firm, finely grained tannins and bold freshness, finishing with epic impact and length. Mature and drinking well now, there's still a good 12-15 years of kick left in this thoroughbred.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RPSubtle yet aromatic character of Indian spices, currants and dried cherries. Full-bodied, with super well-integrated tannins and a long, caressing finish. Wonderful texture. Classy and structured. Long. This was wine of the year in 1998; well deserved.--'95/'96 Bordeaux retrospective. Best after 2009. 18,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WS(Château Ducru-Beaucaillou) I love the style and shape of the very classic 1995 Ducru, which is the most promising vintages here in the decade of the 1990s. The utterly classic nose soars from the glass in a refined and timeless mélange of cassis, dark berries, cigar ash, fresh herbs, tons of gravelly soil tones, a discreet base of cedary new wood and a smoky topnote. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, pure and very suave on the attack, with a rock solid core of sweet black fruit, blossoming layers of complexity, impeccable focus and balance and a very long, primary and still fairly tannic finish. It remains young days for the 1995 Ducru-Beaucaillou, but this will be a brilliant wine in the fullness of time. (Drink between 2020-2075)John Gilman | 94+ JGBright dark ruby. Knockout perfumed nose of great purity: cassis, violet, minerals and bitter chocolate. A penetrating wine of outstanding vinosity and verve; offers great tensile strength. Youthfully tight, classic claret whose extremely long finish features very fine tannins. I'm not convinced Ducru has made a wine in recent vintages to equal its '95 and '96 releases. Drink 2005 through 2025.Vinous Media | 94+ VM

95
WS
As low as $290.00
1995 dyquem Dessert

Served from an ex-chateau bottle. The 1995 Chateau d’Yquem is moving into its secondary aroma phase. A deep golden color, it has a dense and almost Barsac-like bouquet with tangerine, apricot, acacia and melted candle wax. It displays good intensity, unfolding beautifully in the glass. The palate has a strident opening, with a slight bitter edge that lends this Yquem great tension. One can discern layers of marmalade infused with honey fruit, with a powerful, spicy finish that lingers long in the mouth. This is drinking perfectly now, but will surely age with style over many years. Tasted March 2014.Robert Parker Neal Martin | 95 RP-NM

As low as $545.00
1996 ducru beaucaillou Bordeaux Red

I tasted the 1996 Ducru Beaucaillou on four separate occasions from bottle in January. The 1996 is long, with a deep mid-palate. It also reveals tannin in the finish. This wine is remarkable. It is muscular, concentrated, and classic. Bottled in late June, 1998, it exhibits a saturated ruby/purple color, as well as a knock-out nose of minerals, licorice, cassis, and an unmistakable lead pencil smell that I often associate with top vintages of Lafite-Rothschild. It is sweet and full-bodied, yet unbelievably rich with no sense of heaviness or flabbiness. The wine possesses high tannin, but it is extremely ripe, and the sweetness of the black currant, spice-tinged Cabernet Sauvignon fruit is pronounced. This profound, backward Ducru-Beaucaillou is a must purchase. It will be fascinating for readers who own the 1996 to follow the evolution of this exceptional vintage. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2035.Robert Parker | 96 RP(Château Ducru-Beaucaillou) The 1996 Ducru-Beaucaillou is just beginning to stir from its closed adolescence and is showing very good promise for its eventual period of peak drinkability, but that is still more than a decade away. The nose is starting to develop some secondary layers of complexity in its mélange of cassis, dark berries, currant leaf, cigar smoke, a touch of Ducru’s nutskin, complex soil tones, herbs and a nice framing of cedary, spicy wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and quite black fruity in personality, with an excellent signature of soil, a very tobaccoey personality, fine-grained, but quite substantial tannins, lovely acidity and a very long, soil-driven and classic finish. This is a superb vintage of Ducru that should really get interesting to drink around its thirtieth birthday and prove to be very, very long-lived. Impressive juice. (Drink between 2025-2100)John Gilman | 93+ JGThe 1996 Ducru-Beaucaillou is a vintage that I have not tasted for a number of years. Matured in two-thirds new oak, it has an open and expressive bouquet, a mixture of red and black fruit, estuarine scents, touches of liquorice emerging with time. It is higher-toned than the 1995 with iodine evolving with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with succulent tannins, fresh acidity, quite sweet in the mouth and maybe like the 1995, just missing that complexity and terroir expression that I think has defined recent vintages from this estate. Maybe it is slightly compromised by some Merlot (25%) that was picked a but later, but still, there is a lot of pleasure to be found in this 1996. Tasted at the Ducru Beaucaillou vertical at the château.Vinous Media | 93 VMIntense aromas of cedar, vanilla, leather and blackberry. Full-bodied, with coffee, vanilla, ripe fruit and a medium finish. Just about ready. The 1995 is certainly better.--'95/'96 Bordeaux retrospective. Drink now. 18,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 91 WSThe Ducru 1996 is less extravagant than the 2000. It shows a full body, with firm tannins and pretty floral, leaf, light earth and berry character. Needs drinking. 90 pointsJames Suckling | 90 JS

97
RP-HG
As low as $299.00
1998 dyquem Dessert

The 1998 Chateau Yquem was released several months ago. This estate does not allow tasting from cask (where the wine spends 42 months), and it is not released until five years after the vintage. The 1998 Yquem (95 points) is a great success. Made in an elegant style, it is not a blockbuster such as 1990, 1989, and 1988. It is well-delineated, with wonderfully sweet aromas of creme brulee, pineapples, apricots, and white flowers. Medium to full-bodied, it is not as sweet as the biggest/richest Yquem vintages, but it is gorgeously pure, precise, and strikingly complex. Already approachable, it should evolve for 30-50 years ... without a doubt.Robert Parker | 95 RPPale gold. Knockout aromas of creme brulee, coconut, vanilla bean, honey and orange peel. Lush and seductively silky in the mouth; its creamy, seamless texture makes it seem deceptively accessible today but sound acid structure should keep it going for 20 years or more. Not hugely sweet or tropical but very complex and fine. Firm, hazelnutty finish offers great length, if not quite the grip of the ’89.Vinous Media | 95 VM

95
ST
As low as $235.00
2000 ducru beaucaillou Bordeaux Red

Composed of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Merlot, the medium to deep garnet-brick colored 2000 Ducru-Beaucaillou charges out of the gate with flamboyant scents of baked black currants, raisin cake, prunes, Chinese five spice and eucalyptus plus touches of cigar box, new leather and cast iron pan. Medium-bodied, the palate is remarkably refreshing with all these decadent spice and dried berries layers coating the palate, textured by soft, powdery tannins, finishing long and mineral laced. Stunning!Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 96 RPI must admit that I was a little unimpressed with the Ducru 2000 in the beginning when I tasted it after bottling in 2003. But it’s clearly outstanding now and seems to get better and better with age. It shows wonderful aromas of roses and currants with hints of mint. It’s full body yet very finely textured with pretty fruit concentration and length.James Suckling | 96 JSThis has mature hints, but there’s great focus as the cedar, bay and leather notes race along with, rather than pull away from, the core of fig and blackberry fruit flavors. The long, bittersweet cocoa–dusted finish provides a solid bass line.—Blind 2000 Bordeaux retrospective (December 2015). Drink now through 2023. 17,500 cases made.Wine Spectator | 94 WS(Château Ducru-Beaucaillou) The 2000 vintage in Bordeaux is generally in a pretty sullen point of its evolution at the moment, but the 2000 Ducru-Beaucaillou was actually still showing a lot of charm and polish to its powerful veneer at our vertical tasting in Saarbrücken in late March. The bouquet is deep, ripe and classically pure in the Ducru style, offering up scents of cassis, black cherries, gravelly soil tones, tobacco leaf, a touch of dried herbs and still plenty of spicy new oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and quite sappy at the core, with modest acids, firm, ripe tannins, fine focus and nascent complexity and a very long, youthful and tannic finish that still needs a few more years to fully integrate its new wood component. This is still at least a decade away from blossoming and the real fireworks with this excellent vintage of Ducru will not start for another twenty years! A fine example. (Drink between 2022-2075)John Gilman | 94 JGBright ruby-red, less saturated than the 2002. Very pure aromas of cassis, minerals and mocha, with a hint of raw berries. Juicy, pure and tightly wound, with intense flavors of dark berries, bitter chocolate, espresso and licorice. Broadens impressively on the long, aromatic, suave finish, showing lovely grip and class. Finer than Borie’s 2000 Grand Puy Lacoste and in need of longer aging but not clearly stronger.Vinous Media | 92+ VM

97
RP-NM
As low as $319.00
2000 Maucaillou
As low as $55.00
2000 dyquem Dessert White

Things were more difficult in Sauternes than in the rest of Bordeaux in the 2000 vintage, with a brilliant first picking in early October that showed all the promise of the vintage, but with the later crop ruined by heavy rain. In the end Yquem made 20% of its usual yield, but the success of the earlier growing season comes through with luxuriously concentrated apricot and marmalade flavours, laced with bitter orange, lime zest, butterscotch, saffron and white truffles. 128g/l of residual sugar, with total acidity of 4.5. The team behind this wine included current winemaking director Sandrine Garbay, who had begun two years earlier in 1998, with the château already partly owned by Bernard Arnault of LVMH (he bought his first shares in 1996) but still headed up by director Alexandre de Lur Saluces, whose family had been at Yquem since 1875. Drinking Window 2020 - 2050.Decanter | 96 DECForward and flattering, with unctuous marmalade, blood orange, apricot chutney and ginger notes. Juicy and engaging, but without the finely beaded acidity to stretch out fully.—Non-blind Yquem vertical (July 2014). Drink now through 2035.Wine Spectator | 92 WSA rich Yquem, with coffee, dried orange skin, and dried apples. Full and sweet, with a round body and very yummy. A touch of bitterness on the palate.James Suckling | 91 JSServed from an ex-chateau bottle. The millennial 2000 Chateau d’Yquem is a valiant effort in one of the most challenging Sauternes vintages in recent memory. The 2000 is quite deep in color. The nose is crisp and well-defined but not the most complex, as you would expect from a truly challenging growing season in Sauternes. It is pleasant in its own way with delicate scents of tangerine, yellow flowers and Mirabelle. The palate is well-balanced with marmalade tinged opening. I like the acidity here, an Yquem with good race, although it does feel a little tapered toward the finish. Drink now-2025. Tasted March 2014.Robert Parker Neal Martin | 90 RP-NM

92
WS
As low as $590.00
2001 climens Dessert White

A prodigious offering, the 2001 Climens’ light medium bold color with a greenish hue is followed by ethereal aromas of tropical fruits (primarily pineapple), honeysuckle, and flowers. It is a medium-bodied wine of monumental richness, extraordinary precision/delineation, great purity, and moderate sweetness. The finish seemingly lasts forever. This monumental effort is the stuff of legends. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2040+.Robert Parker | 100 RPLoads of orange peel and dried apricots on the nose here. Full-bodied, with a wild and exciting palate. Sweet yet racy. Electrifying. Great class and elegance. One of the best Climens I have tasted. Best after 2010. 1,955 cases made.Wine Spectator | 97 WSThe 2001 Climens has a well-defined, complex bouquet of dried honey, peach skin, quince and a light beeswax scent. Tight at first, it only takes a few swirls of the glass to get going. The palate is where the action is: very intense and concentrated with layers of botrytized fruit, lightly spiced with tangy marmalade, quince and nectarine notes, merging into saffron and gingerbread toward the very engaging, persistent finish. This is a magnificent Barsac that is only beginning to show what it is capable of.Vinous Media | 96 VM

100
RP
As low as $145.00
2001 rieussec Dessert White

This is a crazy wine! It’s sweet, but not sugary. Mushrooms, furniture wax, spices then dried oranges, lemons, pineapples, and just a hint of vanilla. Full-bodied, with great density and power, yet balanced and refined. So amazing, but give this five to six years still. Pull the cork in 2016. 145 grams RS.James Suckling | 100 JSLike lemon curd on the nose, turning to honey and caramel. Full-bodied and very sweet, with fantastic concentration of ripe and botrytized fruit, yet balanced and refined. Electric acidity. Lasts for minutes on the palate. This is absolutely mind-blowing. This is the greatest young Sauternes I have ever tasted. Best after 2010. 12,500 cases made.Wine Spectator | 100 WSA monumental effort, the 2001 Rieussec boasts a light to medium gold color in addition to a fabulous perfume of honeysuckle, smoky oak, caramelized tropical fruits, creme brulee, and Grand Marnier. The wine is massive and full-bodied yet neither over the top nor heavy because of good acidity. With intense botrytis as well as a 70-75-second finish, this amazing Sauternes will be its apogee between 2010-2035.Robert Parker | 99 RPA magical Sauternes that shows how good the 2001 vintage was for the region, the 2001 Château Rieussec offers a spectacular nose of caramelized quince, honeyed flowers, crème brulée, and exotic spices. Wonderfully pure and precise, with good acidity, it still brings a monster of a mid-palate and has boatloads of fruit and opulence, flawless balance, and a brilliant finish.Jeb Dunnuck | 99 JD(Château Rieussec (Sauternes)) The 2001 Château Rieussec has reached a very good point in its evolution to start drinking the wine. The bouquet is fresh, wide open and quite beautiful in its constellation of toasted coconut, apricot, orange zest, honey, a lovely base of chalky soil tones and vanillin oak. On the palate the wine is full, deep and focused, with blossoming complexity, lovely acids and fine length and grip on the suave, refined and zesty finish. Good juice. (Drink between 2015-2050)John Gilman | 93 JGThe 2001 Rieussec is deeper in color than its peers, though this did come from a half-bottle. The bouquet features marmalade, peach and mango scents, though I aver that it does not deliver the mineralité of other, dare I say, more successful vintages. The palate is much better, offering harmonious honeyed fruit, marmalade, orange peel, apricot and light gingerbread notes. It feels long and tender on the finish. This is a great Rieussec that is slightly compromised by the aromatics.Vinous Media | 93 VM

100
WS
As low as $135.00
2001 la tour blanche Dessert White

La Tour Blanche’s spectacular 2001 boasts a light to medium gold color as well as a big, exotic nose of tropical fruits, honeysuckle, orange marmalade, and creme brulee. In the mouth, notions of peaches, lychees, and caramelized citrus give way to a weighty, full-bodied, concentrated yet incredibly precise and well-delineated sweet white. It is a tour de force in Sauternes! Anticipated maturity: 2009-2035.Robert Parker | 97 RPSoft burnished gold, and lighter in frame that some in the lineup with excellent concentration and uplift. A gentle scattering of white flowers as you travel through the palate, with an enveloping floral fragrance of honeysuckle and lilies. Smoked citrus zest and the tertiary notes of an older Sauternes come in through the finish, along with the caramelised toffee-edged apricots that showcase the evolution of the wine. This is excellent and would be beautiful paired with an apricot tart. Makes me want to cook an apricot tart in fact, which has got to be a good thing. Holds its nerve when I go back after 15 minutes, showing excellent grip. Drinking Window 2021 - 2042.Decanter | 95 DECThe 2001 La Tour Blanche has a finely knit bouquet of yellow flowers mixed with wild honey, acacia and white peach. The palate is well balanced with a fine bead of acidity and almost unctuous in the mouth, showing what feels like more residual sugar than its peers. Voluminous and mouth-filling on the finish but missing the tension that would take it up a level. Still, this is a hedonistic delight.Vinous Media | 94 VMVery intense aromas of candied lemons, fresh flowers and vanilla. Full-bodied, very sweet and spicy. Long, long finish. Excellent. Best after 2009. 4,630 cases made, 250 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 93 WS

97
RP
As low as $60.00
2001 lafaurie peyraguey Dessert White

Wow. This has a seamless texture and wonderful depth of fruit with dried pineapple, pear and hints of honey. Full body, very sweet and dense. Superb. Sliced white truffles. Fantastic. Drink or hold.James Suckling | 96 JSThis superb, light to medium gold/green-hued Sauternes is a full-bodied, opulent, enormously endowed, moderately sweet offering with plenty of pineapple, peach, caramel, and smoky new oak characteristics. With great viscosity as well as richness, and good underlying acidity providing vibrancy and definition, it should be at its peak between 2008-2030.Robert Parker | 96 RPExotic and ripe with loads of tropical fruit and sweet fruit. Full-bodied, spicy and very long. Sweet and loaded with botrytis. This is a young Sauternes built for aging. Best after 2010. 7,500 cases made, 1,725 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 95 WSGentle tawny yellow in colour. The first one where I have a touch of volatile acidity. It's not overpowering, and as ever with Sauternes there is so much else going on that it quickly gets forgotten about amid the abundance of other aromatics but a second bottle (colder in temperature also) works better. On this one, the grated ginger character is beautifully invigorating alongside the lemon curd and caramelised apples richness. This has plenty to enjoy but it is not at the heights that Lafaurie-Peyraguey has reached over the past decade, and is a reminder that this estate today is part of the renewal of Sauternes. Drinking Window 2021 - 2040Decanter | 91 DECThe 2001 Lafaurie-Peyraguey, which just predates Silvio Denz’s ownership, has an attractive nose of dried honey, praline and walnut, displaying good intensity though not amazingly complex. The palate is well balanced with a viscous opening, fine acidity and a touch of orange peel and spicebox toward the finish. Elegant and refined, but it needs a little more length.Vinous Media | 91 VM

96
RP
As low as $39.95
2001 nairac Dessert

Intensely botrytised, with loads of allspice and mineral character, yet lively and exciting. Full-bodied, racy and very long. Fresh sweetness.Wine Spectator | 95-98 WSPale gold. Exotic aromas of ripe apricot and sultana raisin, with liqueur-like and candied notes. Very sweet, concentrated and powerful. Extremely young, chewy and dense, with sugar, acidity and alcohol balanced at a high level. Note of licorice. Shows excellent delineation and structure from the outset, as well as terrific length.Vinous Media | 89-92 VMThe Château Nairac 2001 has quite an intense bouquet with dried quince, nougat and hazelnut aromas, slightly more oxidative than its peers and yet still attractive. The palate is well balanced with spicy notes on the entry, well-judged acidity and a lovely marmalade-driven, harmonious finish. This is aging very well and should offer another 10 years of pleasure, possibly more.Robert Parker Neal Martin | 91 RP-NM

95-100
WS
As low as $70.00
2001 guiraud Dessert White

Golden yellow. Butterscotch and vanilla, with hints of ripe apples. Full-bodied, with lots of sweetness and a spicy apricot and honey aftertaste. Excellent concentration and balance. Loads of botrytis character on the finish. Intense. Hard not to drink now because it’s so luscious and rich. Best after 2008. 11,665 cases made.Wine Spectator | 96 WSIntensely fruity and rich with wonderful sweetness and loads of spicy and honey character with a dried apricot undertone. It hasn’t changed much since I last tasted it, just bottled. Great 2001. Drink or hold.James Suckling | 95 JSA medium gold color is accompanied by notes of caramelized oranges, citrus, honeysuckle, creme brulee, and smoke. Full-bodied and opulent, with tremendous intensity, good acidity, and a persistent finish that lasts nearly a minute, this large-scaled, thick, heady Guiraud is one of the finest examples from this estate that I have ever tasted. Anticipated maturity: 2007-2025.Robert Parker | 94 RPBurnt orange colour, with a seductive woodsmoke curl out of the glass. More evolved in character than some, but with the shift in gears comes a savoury, walnut, rare books edge that I love. The fruit character comes through as concentrated nectarine and peach pit, giving both texture and concentration to the finish. Drinking Window 2021 - 2040.Decanter | 93 DECThe 2001 Guiraud sports a fragrant but not intense nose, featuring the lanolin and apricot notes that I observed previously; touches of grilled walnut surface with time. The lightly spiced palate is very well balanced with a honeyed opening and ginger-infused quince and marmalade flavors. It builds nicely on the finish without fully letting rip. A commendable, delicious Guiraud that should give another 15–20 years of drinking pleasure.Vinous Media | 92 VM

96
WS
As low as $70.00
2003 suduiraut sauternes Dessert

A wonderful and fascinating wine with a tangy sweet and sour character. Full and very sweet, with a dried citrus character and an underlying orange marmalade note. Long and delicious already. Lovely balance for having such a ripe finish. This can age forever, but why deny yourself?James Suckling | 96 JSIntense aromas of pecan pie, dried apricot, apples and syrup. Full-bodied, medium-sweet, with a dense mouthfeel of very ripe fruit and a long, powerful and spicy aftertaste. Very, very impressive. Not quite the 2001, but who’s arguing? Best after 2010. 6,500 cases made.Wine Spectator | 93 WS(Château Suduiraut) The 2003 Suduiraut is the finest example of this vintage in Sauternes that I have yet tasted, though this is admittedly from a fairly small sampling of the vintage. The bouquet is deep, pure and very refined in its mélange of pineapple, apricot, peach, coconut, gentle soil tones and vanillin oak. On the palate the wine is full-bodied, deep and most impressively light on its feet, with fine mid-palate depth, with lovely focus and just a touch of youthful bitterness still to resolve on the long, succulent and bouncy finish. The acids here are not as zesty as in the 2005, but there are sufficient to frame the wine beautifully and to keep it fresh and lively far into the future. I would give this wine three or four years to fully blossom and then drink it over the next several decades. (Drink between 2013-2040)John Gilman | 93 JGEx-chateau bottle tasted blind in Sauternes. To be honest, this vintage of Suduiraut has never been thrilling and is certainly not in the same class as the 2001 or 2009, to give two examples. The nose is powerful and rich with scents of Clementine, beeswax and quince that certainly pack a punch. The palate is spicy on the viscous entry with bitter orange, marmalade and stem ginger, although the glycerine-rich finish is missing some freshness and tension. This remains an unashamedly hedonistic Suduiraut. Tasted April 2013.Robert Parker Neal Martin | 90 RP-NMThe 2003 Suduiraut has a strange bouquet with melted wax, quince and wet wool aromas, rather smudged and becoming Aszú-like with time in the glass. The palate is fresh and vibrant on the entry and starts well. It is missing some precision, a little spicy in style however, the warmth of the growing season erodes some of the tension towards the ginger-tinged finish that feels a little abrupt. 136gm/L residual sugar, 4.02gm/L total acidity. Tasted at the Suduiraut vertical at the château.Vinous Media | 90 VM

95
RP
As low as $65.99
2003 doisy daene cuvee lextravagance Dessert White

No written review provided. | 99 RPDoesn’t give much on the nose, with subtle lemon, honey, tangerine and apricot. Full-bodied and very sweet, with a long finish. Thick and compacted, with loads of mango and sweet candied fruit. Best after 2010. 150 cases made.Wine Spectator | 93 WS

99
RP
As low as $279.00
2003 dyquem Dessert

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.James Suckling | 98 JSSquarely 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.—Non-blind Yquem vertical (July 2014). Drink now through 2040.Wine Spectator | 97 WSThe average June temperature for 2003 was the warmest ever recorded at Yquem since they installed their first weather station in 1896. And things were only just starting to heat up. This notoriously hot vintage nonetheless produced some very pleasant Bordeaux surprises, Yquem being one. As readers can guess, obtaining the necessary sugar levels was not the problem this year. If it was a question of sugar alone, berries could well have been harvested in August. But come September, the wait was on for the botrytis. Fortunately, a little rain beginning on the 5th of September kick-started proceedings, and with the help of continued warm temperatures, the noble rot took off like a rocket! After this, frenetic harvesting and strict selection ensued. Harvest was over in a record nine days, resulting in a super rich, concentrated and full botrytized expression that beautifully does justice to both the vintage and to Yquem.Medium lemon-gold colored, the 2003 d’Yquem seems to be emerging from a slumber, awakening with gloriously expressive notes of ginger ale, pineapple upside-down cake, toasted hazelnuts, star anise, cinnamon stick and preserved mandarin peel plus hints of lemon butter, crushed rocks, musk perfume and chalk dust. Full-bodied, super concentrated and decadently unctuous, the palate exudes waves of preserved tropical fruits and citrus sparks charged with energetic freshness, finishing epically long and wonderfully spicy. Alcohol is 13.5% this year, while the residual sugar comes in at a whopping 147 grams per liter, nicely balanced by a total acidity of 4.2 grams per liter H2SO4.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 96 RPThe 2003 Yquem was a homogenous harvest picked over a single trie between 17 and 26 September. It has a rich and opulent nose, crème brûlée, marmalade and a melted candle wax aroma. The palate has more to offer than the nose: fine acidity, less closed than the aromatics, touches of orange rind and mandarin developing with time. This is very commendable given that I do not consider it a great Sauternes vintage. Tasted from ex-château bottle in London.Vinous Media | 93 VM

98
WS
As low as $220.00
2004 ducru beaucaillou Bordeaux Red

Impressively dense, dark flavored wine, very rich and quite extracted. But it still keeps the elegance and some of the freshness of 2004, and there is plenty of blackberry flavor to push the wine along. Heavier than many 2004s, it still shows that great acidity.Wine Enthusiast | 94 WEOne can’t say enough about the efforts Bruno Borie is pouring into this wonderful estate that I have often called the “Lafite Rothschild of St.-Julien.” An undeniable success, the 2004 Ducru boasts sweet aromas of creme de cassis, spring flowers, pain grille, licorice, and road tar. This pure, medium-bodied wine possesses moderately high tannin, superb concentration, good sweetness, and low acidity. Give it 2-3 years of cellaring and drink it over the following 25 years. Also tasted: 2004 Croix de Beaucaillou (88; $25.00)Robert Parker | 93 RPAgainst my expectations, this is not quite as appealing as the 2003 to drink right now, a little more foursquare although extremely classic with plenty of St Julien finesse. The tannins are tight and firm, and this still feels extremely young - you certainly see the majestic ageing ability of Ducru in both the 2003 and 2004. The fruit character is dark, rich and powerful, with a menthol edge growing bright through the palate along with a ton of liquorice root. Extremely good, but lacks the thrill of the 2003. Drinking Window 2019 - 2040Decanter | 93 DECGorgeous aromas of crushed blackberry and currant. Full-bodied, with ultrafine tannins and a long, caressing finish. This is a Ducru with reserve and lots of finesse. Best after 2011. 15,000 cases made.Wine Spectator | 92 WSThis Ducru is such a harmonious wine, with cedar, berry and truffle character. It’s full-bodied with gorgeous tannins and a pretty finish. Drink now.James Suckling | 92 JSNo written review provided. | 92 W&SDeep ruby-red. Reticent nose hints at violet, menthol and spicy oak. Sweet and lush on entry, then broad and classically dry in the middle, with slightly edgy acidity currently dominating the wine’s precise berry and licorice flavors. Finishes with serious, broad tannins that reach the incisors. This is long but the 2006 is longer.Vinous Media | 90+ VM

93
RP
As low as $220.00

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