Chateau d Yquem - Sauternes - sweet - 1995 - 750 ml
WHAT THE CRITICS ARE SAYING
“Served from an ex-chateau bottle. The 1995 Chateau d’Yquem is moving into its secondary aroma phase. A deep golden color, it has a dense and almost Barsac-like bouquet with tangerine, apricot, acacia and melted candle wax. It displays good intensity, unfolding beautifully in the glass. The palate has a strident opening, with a slight bitter edge that lends this Yquem great tension. One can discern layers of marmalade infused with honey fruit, with a powerful, spicy finish that lingers long in the mouth. This is drinking perfectly now, but will surely age with style over many years. Tasted March 2014.” Neal Martin, Wine Advocate
Château d'Yquem's top soil is warm and dry, accumulating heat thanks to smooth flat pebbles and coarse gravel. The clay subsoil contains good water reserves and there are numerous springs on the estate. Yquem's large size made it possible to plant 113 hectares of vines on a very representative sampling of the rich tapestry of the Sauternes region's soil types. This extraordinary variety of soils is a key factor in the quality and complexity of Château d’Yquem. Château d'Yquem has 113 hectares of vines, of which only one hundred produce grapes in a given vintage.
Château d’Yquem was almost English. During the Middle Ages, in fact, the estate belonged to the King of England, who was also Duke of Aquitaine at the time. In 1453, southwest France was once again brought under the dominion of the French crown by Charles VII and has stayed French ever since.
A few years later, the Sauvage family built the château and patiently set about constituting the present-day vineyard, plot by plot. The family became full owners of Yquem in 1711, during the reign of Louis XIV. In 1826, Françoise Joséphine took over the property and built a new wine cellar with her steward Garos – an audacious step at the time – transforming the estate into a true business and developing its international reputation. It was during her time as head of Yquem that the method of picking in several passes was perfected.
The 1995 Vintage
Very warm, dry weather from May to August was followed by 110 mm of rain in 24 hours... There was enough precipitation in September to trigger botrytis, which then spread well. The weather was very cooperative from that point on. The grapes had 16° potential alcohol when the harvest started, but this rose to 30 within two weeks – by which time we had fortunately finished picking. The waiting paid off, and the grapes picked at different stages combined beautifully to make a wine that is both unique and fabulous!
From: France, Bordeaux, Sauternes