2018 Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes Blend

Sauternes Blend - 9L
Reg: $5,450.00
In Stock: 1 btls
Ships Immediately
Pre-Arrival: 0 btls
ETA: Pending
Most orders placed M-F by 3pm (PT) ship same day.
Orders placed on a weekend or holiday will ship the next business day.
Shipping Info

Free storage available
Wine Storage


DC 97 JS 97 WS 96 WA 95 VN 93
DC 97

Decanter, August 2020

Average temperatures 2.7°C over average, combined with 20% of the normal rainfall from mid August to the end of July made makes this a naturally rich, low-yielding vintage (40% less than average, not helped by a hail...
JS 97

jamessuckling.com, September 2020

An extremely polished and refined d’Yquem with lightly cooked peaches and mangos and an overlay of vanilla and cream with some lemon meringue. Orange peel, too. What is striking is the texture, which is creamy and so...
WS 96

Wine Spectator, March 2021

A beauty from start to finish, with fresh, racy notes of honeysuckle, quinine and mirabelle plum leading off, followed by richer quince, creamed pear and white nectarine flavors. Everything melds through the finish...
WA 95

Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, October 2023

The 2018 d'Yquem is a great success despite a challenging harvest, exuding aromas of peach, pear, menthol and orchard fruits, complemented by an elegant, floral-driven bouquet. It’s remarkably balanced and fresh on the...
VN 93

Vinous, April 2022

The 2018 Yquem was tasted just a few months earlier before this second reading at the château. My notes are pretty consistent with that dried honey and saffron scented aromas, perhaps just missing the energy conveyed by...


Color & Type Dessert
Varietal Sauternes Blend
Country France
Region Bordeaux
Sub-region Sauternes
Vintage 2018
Size 9L
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.

Introducing the exquisite 2018 Chateau d'Yquem, a true gem from the Sauternes region of Bordeaux, France. This white wine, crafted with meticulous attention to detail by the esteemed Chateau d'Yquem, showcases the artistry and finesse that has made this estate legendary in the world of wine.

In the glass, this wine gleams with a radiant golden hue, inviting you to indulge in its sensory splendor. With an alcohol percentage of 13.5, this wine strikes the perfect balance between elegance and power. The closure, a classic cork, adds a touch of tradition to the experience, ensuring that each bottle is a testament to the time-honored craftsmanship of the estate.

The 2018 vintage was met with challenging weather conditions, but the skilled winemakers at Chateau d'Yquem managed to overcome these obstacles and create a wine that is nothing short of exceptional. The average temperatures were 2.7°C higher than usual, resulting in a naturally rich and low-yielding vintage. A hail storm in July further reduced the yield, making this vintage 40% less than average. However, the resilience of the vineyards prevailed, and the grapes were harvested slowly and carefully over a period of 17 days, extending well into October.

The resulting wine is a testament to the patience and expertise of the winemaking team. The 2018 Chateau d'Yquem boasts a gloriously gourmet 145g/ha residual sugar, enveloping the palate in a luscious and decadent embrace. A pH level of 3.95 ensures a harmonious balance, preventing the sugar from overpowering the wine's natural freshness.

Upon first sip, the intensity and glossiness of this wine captivate the senses. Satin-textured apricot and white peach flavors take center stage, exuding an opulence that is both seductive and refined. Exotic fruits such as pineapple and mango make an appearance, adding a tropical flair to the ensemble. However, winemaker Sandrine Garbay has masterfully maintained a focus on fresher flavors of lime zest and citrus, providing a delightful counterpoint to the wine's richness and concentration.

While the 2018 Chateau d'Yquem is currently quite closed, it possesses both power and balance that promise a remarkable evolution with time. It is recommended to wait until 2022 to fully appreciate its complexities, but this wine has the potential to age gracefully until 2050.

Receiving high praise from critics, this wine has garnered a score of 97 from Decanter, James Suckling, and Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, as well as a score of 96 from Wine Spectator. Decanter describes it as an "excellent Yquem," highlighting its intense flavors and glossy texture. James Suckling emphasizes its elegance and impressive finish, while Robert Parker's Wine Advocate celebrates its creamy texture and bright, sparkling freshness. Wine Spectator commends its seductive qualities and predicts a long aging potential.

In conclusion, the 2018 Chateau d'Yquem is a wine that exemplifies the epitome of luxury and craftsmanship. Its rich history, combined with the expertise of the winemakers, has resulted in a wine that is both thrilling and refined. With its radiant golden hue, luscious flavors, and impressive aging potential, this wine is a true masterpiece that will surely enchant even the most discerning of palates.