Chateau d'Yquem 2003 (Sauternes, France)
$350 (approx 375ml), Cork, 13.5%
Firstly, a big thanks has to go to Patrick The Wining Pom for sharing this bottle with us. It was, as Patrick describes so well here, a wonderful experience to enjoy a world class wine with the some likely winos.
And world class it was. Near perfect even. Everything you could possibly want in a botrytised sweet wine. What I remember most (it was a long night) was the length. It's the sort of wine that you can't forget, for it lingers. Specifics? On the nose this showed pineapple, creme caramel and lemon/orange marmalade characters with some custard oak on the fringes. Palate wise it's rich - a warm year wine - and plusher than some other Yquems, loaded with more of the orange/lemon marmalade fruit flavours alongside ginger, pineapple and toffee. Lots of flavour here, bounds of flavour even, all honey sweet and viscous through the middle.
At this point it sounds sweet and fat doesn't it? But that's where the juxtaposition starts, for it's a sweet wine that's firmly acidic, marked by plenty of that grapefruit natural acid. What really propels this forward too - and marks it as something special - is just how perfectly balanced it is. It's a massive wine, loaded with serious botrytis characters and intense sweetness (which I'll admit not everyone loves) but it never actually feels heavy, or tart, or even overly sweet. It's just perfect.
Yes. More please. Absolute perfection in a bottle. 19.5/98