It’s hard to taste a sip of Château d’Yquem Sauternes and not be transported. It’s one of the most ethereal, sublime sweet wines you can put in your mouth. From Jefferson and Washington to the Tsars of Russia, d’Yquem’s list of fans is centuries old and many thousands of names long. We invite you to commune with them.
D’Yquem [DEE-kemm] is a blend of primarily Sémillon (80%) and Sauvignon Blanc (20%), from fanatically low yields—one vine typically produces one glass or less. Pickers typically pick the 90-hectare vineyard in 6 passes to ensure that only perfectly botrytised fruit is harvested. The level of care exercised here is simply unparalleled in the world, let alone France. Its perfumes of honey, crème brulée, pineapple, apricot, and exotic spices are simply intoxicating.
In order to fully appreciate what we’re describing, you should experience this wine with some bottle age. Not many wines can age 50-100+ years and still reveal an astonishing delicacy and grace at the table. Why not lay in a 6 pack or a case of this brilliant 2016, for yourself or posterity?
“What a sexy and moreish wine that makes you want to drink the whole bottle. Flavors and aromas of cooked apples, grilled pineapple, pie crust, apricots, dried mushrooms and flan. Full-bodied, yet tight and reserved. Very long and powerful. Lasts for minutes. Another great wine.”
PRE-ARRIVAL; ARRIVING JANUARY 2019.
The 2016 Château d'Yquem was picked over four tries through the vineyard, commencing on 27 September and finishing on 4 November. The crucial pass through the vines took place between 18-22 October when over half the crop was picked. In fact, 75% of the crop was picked during the final two weeks of the harvest. It has 14.2% alcohol and a residual sugar level of 135 grams per liter, a pH of 3.80. A classic blend of 75% Sémillon and 25% Sauvignon Blanc, it has a comparatively nuanced bouquet compared to Yquems that I have encountered at this stage. It opens gradually with light honeyed aromas, white flowers, apple blossom and just a touch of honeysuckle, although it does not possess the bravura personality of the astounding 2015. The palate is medium-bodied with a viscous opening, a subtle spice note leaving the mouth tingling. This is a fresh Yquem, tensile with moderate weight and delivering, perhaps belatedly, fine attack on the finish lined with subtle lemongrass notes. It will be interesting to plot the progress of this Yquem throughout its barrel maturation. This is an excellent Yquem no doubt, though I was missing that nerve, the labyrinthine complexity that can mark a top-tier Yquem even at this premature stage. I suspect that this will drink earlier than others, but age in a style only it knows.
What a sexy and moreish wine that makes you want to drink the whole bottle. Flavors and aromas of cooked apples, grilled pineapple, pie crust, apricots, dried mushrooms and flan. Full-bodied, yet tight and reserved. Very long and powerful. Lasts for minutes. Another great wine.