Archive for October, 2011

Retasting the 2009 Sauternes vintage

Monday, October 31st, 2011

I was interested to read Jancis Robinson’s recent reports following the Union des Grand Crus tasting of the 2009 vintage.  Her new Sauternes scores are substantially higher, a fact that she puts possibly down to tasting the wines after the reds compared to tasting them on their own en primeur.  She was not alone, however, in singing the praises of Sauternes with many tasters moved to ‘tweeting’ about them on the day.

For my part I don’t think it matters much when these wines are tasted – they are simply superb!  We will retaste properly next April after they have had a while in bottle and just prior to shipping.  In the meantime here is what Jancis had to say about a few of the wines we still have a small stock of at original prices – just click on a link for more information or to buy:

2009 Bastor-Lamontagne – 16 pts Drink 2013-2020 (15.5 pts En Primeur)
Light and barley sugar with a streak of lime. Attractive! (Specially after all that dry red…) Pears but not the most concentrated, but one of the most alluring Bastor-Lamontagnes I can remember, even if it lacks the subtlety of its grander peers.

2009 de Fargues – 18.5 pts Drink 2012-2040 (17.5 pts En Primeur)
Very complex nose. Tense and butterscotch. Big and bold and so exciting and subtle. Already delivering lots of interest! I could enjoy this tonight!

2009 de Rayne Vigneau – 17 pts Drink 2016-2030 (16 pts En Primeur)
Thick and sticky and very sweet and almost oily. Fresh and floral and delivers lots of (relatively simple) pleasure. Barley sugar. A little chewy on the end.

2009 Doisy-Vedrines – 16 pts Drink 2015-2022 (15.5 pts En Primeur)
A little sugary. I could do with more acidity and depth. Chewy. Pretty simple.

2009 Nairac – 17 pts Drink 2016-2028 (18 pts En Primeur)
Just slightly mousy on the nose. Lime syrup. Certainly fun but not as noble as some of the others.

2011 Sauternes Harvest Report

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

In 2011 Sauternes and Barsac growers have had to handle some pretty extreme weather conditions.  The well-honed skills of the pickers at the top estates have been thoroughly tested on bunches that at best contained brilliant botrytised grapes (but sometimes alongside some with bad rot) and which arrived both early and at breakneck pace.  A stressful time for many owners, managers and winemakers but, as the video reports below from Sauternes and Barsac hopefully show, a potentially very productive one.  Enjoy!  Bill Blatch

2011 Sauternes Report

2011 Barsac Report