Chateau La Tour Blanche Sauternes (375ML half-bottle) 2001
Other Dessert from Sauternes and Barsac, Bordeaux, France
The Wine Advocate - "La Tour Blanche’s spectacular 2001 boasts a light to medium gold color as well as a big, exotic nose of tropical fruits, honeysuckle, orange marmalade, and creme brulee. In the mouth, notions of peaches, lychees, and caramelized citrus give way to a weighty, full-bodied, concentrated yet incredibly precise and well-delineated sweet white. It is a tour de force in Sauternes! Anticipated maturity: 2009-2035."
Wine Spectator - "Very intense aromas of candied lemons, fresh flowers and vanilla. Full-bodied, very sweet and spicy. Long, long finish. Excellent."
Vinous / Antonio Galloni - "Pale yellow-gold. Reticent nose hints at caramel and vanilla. Fat and high-toned, with superripe, unctuous flavors of candied yellow fruits and honey. At once chewy and lively, and hiding more than it's showing today. Very strong finish features subtle spicy persistence."
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Chateau La Tour Blanche Winery
The construction of Chateau La Tour Blanche dates from the 18th Century. In 1855, The Imperial Government requested that the most deserving wines of The Gironde be submitted to The Universal Exhibition in Paris so that a classification system could be established. Chateau La Tour Blanche was placed top of The 'Premiers Crus' of The Sauternes Appellation.
But it was not until the beginning of the 20th Century that the originality of this prestigious estate's history became really apparent. The former owner, Daniel Iffla, a.k.a. "Osiris", decided to bequeath the property to the French State under the condition that a Wine School be created on site. After having accepted the donation in 1909, The Ministry of Agriculture commissioned construction of La Tour Blanche School of Viticulture and Enology in 1911.
Despite its unusual status, this wine-producing Estate is entirely managed by authentic professionals in The Wine Trade. View all Chateau La Tour Blanche Wines
About Sauternes and Barsac(saw-TURN & BAR-sak)
The regions of Sauternes & Barsac are both located southeast of Graves, almost directly south of St-Émilion, and hug the Garonne River as it curves. Both areas are dedicated to producing sweet, white wines. The rains, the mists, the humidity and the climate, all help foster the necessary mold that leads to the unfortified, but lusciously sweet wines produced there.
Semillon is the primary grape here as it takes well to bortrytis, also known as "noble rot." Sauvignon Blanc is used in the blend to add acidity to the richer, thicker Semillon. The process for making the sweet wines of Sauternes and Barsac is long, labored and costly. Adter it has reached maximum ripeness, the Semillon grapes are left on the vine until they are infected with botrytis. This helpful mold then shrivels the grapes, concentrating the sugars but maintaining the acids. Weather is not always agreeable and berries must be picked at just the right moment, all by hand. The grapes yeild less juice than dry wines, due to their shriveled and concentrated state. Some houses, like the famed Chateau Yquem, will not make a wine in a less-than-perfect year. All these factors lead to highly prized, and often expensive, wine. However, the taste is well worth it. In the palate the wines of Sauternes & Barsac are luscious and sweet, yet with the balanced acidity to keep them from being too cloying or candied.Wines with the Sauternes AC must be sweet - dry wines are labeled under the Graves or Bordeaux AC. Barsac wines may be labeled either Barsac AC or Sauternes AC. Typically, Barsac wines are a little lighter in body and less intense than Sauternes.
About France - Other regionsWhen it comes to wine, France is a classic. Classic blends, grapes and styles began in the country and they still remain. Think about it - people ask for a Burgundian style Pinot Noir, they refer to wines as Bordeaux or Rhone blends - Champagne even had to pass a law to stop international wineries from putting their region on the label of all sparkling wine.
The top regions of France are: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Languedoc-Roussillon, Loire, Rhone. And these regions are so diverse! It makes sense that wine regions throughout the world try to emulate their style. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are no longer French varieties, but international varieties. They may not be the leader of cutting edge technology or value-priced wines, but there is no doubt that they are still producing wines of great quality and diversity.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.