2010 Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes Blend

Sauternes Blend - 750ML
Reg: $495.00
$395.00
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ETA: Nov. 2022
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REVIEWS

JG 98 JG 98 WA 98 WE 98 WE 98 JS 97 JS 97 JL 97 WS 97
JG 98

View From The Cellar, March 2011

98+ The 2010 Château d’Yquem is an utterly stunning young wine and a very worthy follow-up to the magical wine produced at this estate in 2009. The bouquet is deep, complex and flat out brilliant, as it soars from the...
JG 98

View From The Cellar, March 2011

98+ The 2010 Château d’Yquem is an utterly stunning young wine and a very worthy follow-up to the magical wine produced at this estate in 2009. The bouquet is deep, complex and flat out brilliant, as it soars from the...
WA 98

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, March 2020

Pale to medium lemon-gold color, the 2010 d'Yquem has retreated into its shell at this youthful stage, offering spritely suggestions of lemon curd, lime cordial and green mango with wafts of honeysuckle, spice cake, sea...
WE 98

Wine Enthusiast, June 2011

(96-98 points) Stunningly rich in character, a wine with great power to go with its acidity and sweetness. It is dense, powerful and concentrated powered by honey and by spice from the wood. The finish has dried apricots...
WE 98

Wine Enthusiast, June 2011

(WE96-98 points) Stunningly rich in character, a wine with great power to go with its acidity and sweetness. It is dense, powerful and concentrated powered by honey and by spice from the wood. The finish has dried...
JS 97

jamessuckling.com, February 2013

The purity of Botrytis in this wine is so impressive with dried fruits such apple and mango. And then spicy character. Full body and very sweet but it is incredibly fresh and lively. Such class and elegance. Perfectly...
JS 97

jamessuckling.com, November 2013

The purity of Botrytis in this wine is so impressive with dried fruits such apple and mango. And then spicy character. Full body and very sweet but it is incredibly fresh and lively. Such class and elegance. Perfectly...
JL 97

TheWineCellarInsider.com, November 2018

Richly textured, with layers of fat, sweet, ripe and overripe orange hued tropical fruits, pineapples, mango, white peach and apricot, all slathered in honey and tinged with vanilla. Tightly wound at the moment, there is...
WS 97

Wine Spectator, January 2014

A pure, racy, floral style, with bright white peach, heather and honeysuckle notes driving along. The core of fresh orchard fruit is unctuous, the finish long and lacy, with marvelous cut and finesse. This shows the...

WINE DETAILS

Color & Type Dessert
Varietal Sauternes Blend
Country France
Region Bordeaux
Sub-region Sauternes
Vintage 2010
Size 750ML
Percent alcohol 13.5%
Closure Cork

Sauternes is the best and most sought-after region for dessert wine in Bordeaux, perhaps in all of France. Chateau d’Yquem is the most celebrated of all Sauternes producers.

The history of d’Yquem can be traced back to 1593, when local nobleman Jacques Sauvage became the feudal overseer of the property. The area was already home to late-harvest wines even then, and the Sauvage family moved things forward, creating “modern” vineyards—and the famous chateau—on the unique hill that contributes to d’Yquem’s outstanding quality. In 1711, the Sauvage family became full owners of the property and managed to retain it through the French Revolution.

The quality and reputation of Chateau d’Yquem wine improved as the vineyard was methodically expanded and enhanced. By the late 18th century, it was celebrated internationally and counted Thomas Jefferson among its staunch supporters. But the house continued to innovate and better its practices. The constructed a large, purpose-built cellar for maturation and aging in 1826 and, not long after, began harvesting in multiple passes to optimize fruit quality. This work was rewarded when Chateau d’Yquem was designated the only 1er Cru Superieur dessert wine in the famous 1855 classification of Bordeaux wines.

Chateau d’Yquem holds just under 300 acres of vineyard land on gravelly, well-drained soil, but only uses about 250 to make wine in any given year. The remainder is due to a program of continual replanting which ensures that producing vines are always in their prime. And the vineyard is planted only to Semillion (75%) and Sauvignon Blanc (25%), eschewing Muscadelle which is commonly used in the area but makes less distinguished wine.

Within an hour of harvest, the grapes of Chateau d’Yquem are in the winery and being pressed. Unlike most white wines, quality actually improves with multiple pressings as that extracts more sugar and flavor intensity. Chateau d’Yquem three or four times, with the initial effort yielding about 75% of the total volume.

Chateau d’Yquem does all its fermentation in new French oak barrels. This is unsual for Sauternes, but results in the most flavorful and pristine wine. Although there is variation from one vintage to the next, the typical Chateau d’Yquem wine finishes fermentation at 13.5% alcohol with 150 grams/liter of sugar.

All the barrels age for six to eight months after fermentation. At that point, under-performing barrels are set aside. The remaining barrels go to the aging cellar for 20 months, where they are topped up twice weekly to maintain freshness. For pure flavors and clarity, the wines are also racked 15 times and then fined before the final, blind tasting which determines the blend that will go into bottle.

Although not always very outgoing when young, Chateau d’Yquem is marked by fruit (apricot, mandarin, and occasionally tropical fruit) and oak (vanilla and toasty aromas). Older vintages, on the other hand, have an extraordinarily complex fragrance as soon as the bottle is opened, with hints of dried fruit (dried apricot, prune, stewed fruit, and marmalade), spice (cinnamon, saffron, and liquorice), and even flowers (lime blossom, etc.). The first impression of Chateau d'Yquem on the palate is always very silky, and often sumptuous. It then fills out, "coating the palate". This fine wine has a strong, but never overbearing character, with great elegance and poise. It always maintains a balance between sugar and acidity (sweetness and freshness). A touch of bitterness can also contribute to the overall harmony.