Posts Tagged ‘Clos Haut-Peyraguey’

2011 Sauternes Revisited

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

Last year many of you will have taken delivery of some 2011 Sauternes so we thought it would be a good idea to see how they are drinking now – superbly as it happens! I also report below on the vintage generally (it’s easy to forget the excellent 2011 Sauternes vintage after the fantastic 2009s and 2010s) and how a panel of UK wine experts found the wines when they were tasted last week at the annual Southwold tasting.

To help you find a particular wine that you may have bought we’ve filmed everything in alphabetical order this time – enjoy the videos!  Bill Blatch

2011 Summary

2011 Sauternes A to C

2011 Sauternes D to G

2011 Sauternes L to N

2011 Sauternes R to Y

2013 Sauternes Tasting Notes From Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

Thursday, May 1st, 2014

Two more great value 1st Growth 2013 Sauternes – Clos Haut-Peyraguey and Chateau de Rayne-Vigneau – are now out HERE

To help you work out just how good the 2013 Sauternes are we’ve added tasting notes for all wines from Neal Martin of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Jeannie Cho Lee of Decanter Magazine, Matthew Jukes of the Daily Mail and Roger Voss of Wine Enthusiast Magazine.  Just click on any label to view the notes for that particular wine.

My notes are also available and should be read first – I taste all of the wines many more times during their evolution than anyone and know them better than most.  I still steadfastly refuse to score I’m afraid (how can you judge your family?) and wouldn’t encourage anyone to look too closely at scores at this stage as we are still a year (or two for some wines) away from bottling and all of the wines are at different stages of their evolution.  Neal Martin’s notes, however, in particular should be read in detail – he is fast developing into an excellent taster of young Sauternes.

Enjoy! Bill Blatch

The 2013 Sauternes Tasting Videos

Friday, April 11th, 2014

The tasting videos for the 2013 Sauternes are finally published below – we hope you enjoy them as much as we’ve enjoyed tasting the wines!

To help you locate any particular wine you are interested in there are five videos in alphabetical order.  The first video covers the A-C chateaux and includes Domaine de l’Alliance, Ch d’Arche (starts at 1:15), Ch Bastor-Lamontagne (1:53), Ch Broustet (2:26), Ch Caillou (3:12), Clos Haut-Peyraguey (3:37) and Ch Coutet (4:47).

In the second video covering the D-G chateaux you will find Ch Doisy Daene, L’Extravagant de Doisy Daene (0:59), Ch Doisy-Vedrines (1:47), Ch de Fargues (2:22), Ch Filhot (3:05) and Ch Guiraud (4:03).

Next it’s the turn of Ch Haut-Bergeron, Ch Les Justices (0:59), Ch Lafaurie-Peyraguey (2:04), Ch Lamothe Despujols (3:40) and Lamothe Guignard (4:10) .

Ch Liot kicks off the next video followed by the wonderful Ch de Malle (1:23), Ch de Myrat (2:33), Ch Nairac (3:22), Ch Rabaud Promis (4:41) and Ch Raymond-Lafon (5:29).

Finally, but by no means least we have a string of 1st Growth wines starting with Ch de Rayne Vigneau and then Ch Rieussec (1:08), Ch Sigalas-Rabaud (2:10), Ch Suduiraut (2:49) and Ch La Tour Blanche (4:01).

2013 Sauternes L’Union des Grands Crus Tasting

Saturday, April 5th, 2014

What a wonderful week it has been for tasting 2013 Sauternes!

Many thanks to Nicholas and Eloise Heeter-Tari at Nairac, Silvio Denz and Eric Laramona at Lafaurie-Peyraguey, Pierre Lurton and all the team at Yquem, Charles Chevalier at Rieussec, Berenice Lurton at Climens, Pierre Montegut at Suduiraut, Vincent Labergére at de Rayne Vigneau, Xavier Planty at Guiraud, Laure de Lambert Compeyrot at Sigalas-Rabaud, Aline and Philippe Baly at Coutet and all the staff at La Lagune in the Medoc for organising tasting events and to all the other Sauternes growers for providing us with some wonderful samples.  As well as tasting the wines ourselves we’ve put them in front of journalists and wine merchants from all around the world and everywhere they have been tasted they have brought a smile to people’s faces.

Before I finally get down to capturing my thoughts on the wines on video here are some videos Steve took at La Lagune where the Sauternais were exhibiting their wines as part of the Union de Grands Crus tastings.  It’s a great chateau and a wonderful place to taste.  There is, however, a small touch of irony in the location as La Lagune was one of a few red chateaux that decided not to present a wine this year, presumably not least because of the effect of botrytis on their Merlot grapes – the same botrytis that has produced such wonderfully fresh Sauternes in 2013.

Its all smiles though in Sauternes – as these sample videos from happy growers show.  Enjoy!  Bill Blatch

March of the Peyragueys!

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

Unlike in Barsac making top quality 2012 Sauternes was far from easy, especially in the heart of the area focused around Yquem.  Yquem decided not to declare their vintage, as did Rieussec, Suduiraut and Raymond Lafon.  La Tour Blanche have produced a wonderful wine with strict selection but there are only 24 barrels, the same amount as at Guiraud, and de Fargues have only made 10 barrels!

Getting your hands on good quality and good value First Growth Sauternes has never been more tricky but the two Peyragueys, Clos Haut-Peyraguey (note the innovative pack size – very useful) and Lafaurie-Peyraguey have both released at very reasonable prices (just click HERE for all details) and, despite cripplingly small quantities again, we do have small amounts available.

Clos Haut-Peyraguey has just been taken over by Bernard Magrez of Pape Clément, La Tour Carnet and Fombrauge fame.  He has great plans for the estate and has sensibly retained (and promoted) our good friend Anthony Defives.  For my thoughts on Anthony’s first élévage take a look at this video clip:

Meanwhile across the road Eric Larramona and his team have, like others, selected drastically with only 2 or 3 lots being regarded as good enough for the Grand Vin.  Here are my thoughts:

All the 2012 wines can be found by clicking – HERE!  Enjoy!  Bill Blatch


2009 Sauternes Tasting From Bottle – Part 3

Monday, February 4th, 2013

Now onto some First Growth 2009 Sauternes!

Some other tasting results from the Southwold tasting are filtering through.  For Jancis Robinson’s full tasting notes (subscription required) click here.  The overall opinion was:

The sweet whites on the other hand were lovely, some of the best wines we tasted in Southwold. The wines were very charming indeed and had quite enough acidity. Blatch, a big sweet white bordeaux fan, puts 2009 ahead of 2005. We found the quality generally very high. 

We have half bottles of the de Fargues (18.5pts from Jancis) and the Rabaud-Promis (17pts) available for immediate delivery in the UK – just click on this link!

Enjoy! Bill Blatch

2011 Sauternes First Growths

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

2011 Sauternes is without doubt a big success.  And at the head of this we have some sensational First Growth wines.

For my thoughts on Coutet, Clos Haut-Peyraguey, de Fargues, Guiraud, Lafaurie-Peyraguey and Rabaud Promis click on the first video below.  After that click on the second video for comments on Raymond Lafon, de Rayne Vigneau, Rieussec, Sigalas Rabaud, Suduiraut and La Tour Blanche.  There is at least one sensational wine in each video!  Enjoy!  Bill Blatch

2011 Sauternes looking good in barrel!

Friday, December 23rd, 2011

While you are drinking your Sauternes with your Christmas pudding you can rest assured that, in the 2011 Sauternes, a possibly great vintage is slowly maturing in barrel following the finish of the fermentation period.

Both Steve and Venice popped over from England and we raced round a few chateaux in between meetings.  We tasted a range of vintages but below are four videos covering some 2011 wines, both direct from the barrel and from prototype blends.  Whichever way you look at it 2011 is looking very promising although selection, as always, will make the difference between the good and the great wines.  Enjoy!  Bill Blatch

2011 Domaine de l’Alliance – a prototype blend from the brilliant Daniel Alibrand

2011 Clos Haut Peyraguey – we were lucky to call in here just after the Oenologist so were treated to some prepared samples from all of the different lots – thank you Martine and Anthony!

2011 Chateau d’Arche – after a chat in the vineyard with owner Jérôme Cosson who is now also making Sauternes for Clos Dady following it’s Russian takeover we went inside to taste direct from the barrel

2011 Chateau Lamothe Guignard – here co-owner Philippe Guignard shows off samples from 3 of the lots that will come together to make the final blend

2011 Sauternes – News from the Chateaux

Thursday, November 24th, 2011

I am on holiday scuba diving at the moment but exciting news has reached me even under the seas about the 2011 Sauternes vintage.  Below are some interesting snippets from the official Grand Crus press release:

Yquem (Francis Mayeur) – “We started to pick on September 5th, which makes 2011 the fourth earliest year ever at Yquem, after 1893, 1960, and 1997.  The final trie ended on October 5th; only in 1934 and 2003 have we finished harvesting so early at Yquem.  The vat house was heady with complex, intense aromas that confirmed the excellent impression we had of this vintage during the harvest.  The quality of the fruit and the balance are superb, reminiscent of 1893 or 1997.  Without a doubt, this will be one of Château d’Yquem’s finest vintages.”

Climens (Bérénice Lurton) – “We have just stopped the fermentation so at this stage the wines are still a little thick and chewy from the mutage.  Nevertheless, they are showing wonderful potential.  I was expecting delicate wines this year but here we are with rich, powerful Sauternes that have depth and energy.  These will be great wines.”

Clos Haut-Peyraguey (Martine Langlais-Pauly) – “It all happened so fast, we really had to be on our toes this year.  Botrytis and concentration in the grapes spread at an amazing pace.  I tasted all the batches last week and was surprised by how clean and fresh they are.  They are brilliantly balanced and very powerful.  I never like talking about a vintage too early but I really think we have some lovely wines this year.”

Doisy Daene (Denis Dubourdieu) – “Just incredible! I am astonished at the levels of concentration we’ve achieved in 2011.  They are way beyond our expectations and at 25o potential alcohol, they have gone through the roof.  At the moment, it is still early to give a true assessment of the 2011 wines but they certainly show phenomenal richness, concentration, depth and freshness.  This opulence is unparalleled.  I think it is safe to say we are looking at a very great vintage indeed.”

Doisy-Védrines (Olivier Castéja) – “Personally, I have never seen juice with such even quality.  2011 is a very uncharacteristic, unusual year so comparisons are not easy.  At this stage, the wines are very much like the 2001s.  Having said that, I arrived at Doisy-Vedrines in 1973 and I can honestly say I have never seen a vintage quite like 2011.”

For the full press release click on this link:  2011 Harvest Press Release

Very promising indeed!  What a wonderful trio of vintages 2009, 2010 and 2011 (in Sauternes at least) might prove to be.  Bill Blatch

2011 Vintage Progress Report

Friday, August 26th, 2011

I popped down to Sauternes and Barsac at the beginning of the week and checked up on the grapes at Guiraud, Liot and Clos Haut-Peyraguey.  It’s looking good again but this is a critical stage and the embryonic botrytis needs the right conditions over the next few weeks.

The grapes themselves are excellent with good sugar levels and excellent aromatics.  It will be an early harvest with the first picks starting as early as next week to weed out unwanted ‘beery’ grapes and capture some of the early botrytised bunches.  This will leave the beautifully golden grapes you can see in the videos below to ripen fully and gain an added degree or so of potential alcohol.  Bill Blatch