Chateau d’Yquem, Sauternes 2005 From the start, the nose features a complex mix of honey, vanilla, appropriate volatility, creme caramel and dried apricots. In the mouth it is broad and viscous, a wine whose texture is luscious. With time, the fruits pop out, showing the expected apricots but also riper fruits in a tropical vein. This wine is quite delicious.
The grapes are planted 80% Semillon and 20% Sauvignon Blanc. Individual berries are picked over 5 to 11 successive passes through the vineyard, yielding a 20-year average of merely 8 hectolitres per hectare.
While many traditionalists in France serve this wine on Christmas Eve with fois gras, others opt for rich seafood like lobster. For myself and our host on this visit, the ultimate pairing is Roquefort cheese, with its complex amalgam of saltiness, acidic tang, forceful flavor and silky texture. A sweet wine with this much complexity yearns for such a match.
Tasted at the estate in Sauternes. Produced and bottled in Sauternes 13.5% available for $460 at The Chicago Wine Company in Wood Dale, IL and $699.98 at The Wine House in San Francisco, CA Chateau d’Yquem