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Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes 1983

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      Winemaker Notes

      Rich, opulent concentrated and full-bodied. Medium gold with a honeyed, oaky, flowery, tropical fruit bouquet, magnificent and unique.

      Critical Acclaim

      All Vintages
      WS 98
      Wine Spectator
      RP 96
      Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
      The 1983 is among the most concentrated wines from this property over the last 20 years, with a staggering display of extract and a mind-boggling amount of glycerin. The vintage commenced early for Yquem, beginning on September 29 and finishing on November 18. Most observers feel the 1983 will mature more slowly than the 1986, and will last for almost 100 years. Given Yquem's unbelievable aging potential, such comments do not seem far fetched. At present, the 1983 is enormous, with huge, honeyed, pineapple, coconut, and caramel flavors, massive extract, and an unctuous quality barely framed by acidity and new oak. I do not feel the wine has changed since bottling, and I would not want to start drinking it for at least another 10-15 years. Anticipated maturity: 2005-2050.
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      Chateau d'Yquem

      Chateau d'Yquem

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      Chateau d'Yquem, Sauternes, Bordeaux, France
      Image of winery
      In 1993, Château d'Yquem celebrated 400 years of ownership by the same family. In 1593, the Sauvage family bought this estate which came into the Lur Saluces patrimony when Francoise Joséphine de Sauvage married Count Louis Amédée de Lur Saluces in 1785. Marquis Bertrand de Lur Saluces was one of the 20th century's most important personalities in the world of wine.

      Count Alexandre de Lur Saluces has followed in his Uncle Betrand's footsteps since 1968. Highly motivated to perfect this prestigious product while respecting tradition, he is determined to offer maximum quality. All those who love this inimitable wine, from Jefferson to Pamela Harriman, former U.S. Ambassador, by way of great Duke Constantine, have approved this philosophy from vintage to vintage.

      Yquem is the result of painstaking efforts by everyone who works on the estate. However, nature is the major factor in making the most of the rare soil of Yquem.

      Sauternes

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      Sweet and unctuous but delightfully charming, the finest Sauternes typically express flavors of exotic dried tropical fruit, candied apricot, dried citrus peel, honey or ginger and a zesty beam of acidity.

      Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Sauvignon Gris and Muscadelle are the grapes of Sauternes. But Sémillon's susceptibility to the requisite noble rot makes it the main variety and contributor to what makes Sauternes so unique. As a result, most Sauternes estates are planted to about 80% Sémillon. Sauvignon is prized for its balancing acidity and Muscadelle adds aromatic complexity to the blend with Sémillon.

      Botrytis cinerea or “noble rot” is a fungus that grows on grapes only in specific conditions and its onset is crucial to the development of the most stunning of sweet wines.

      In the fall, evening mists develop along the Garonne River, and settle into the small Sauternes district, creeping into the vineyards and sitting low until late morning. The next day, the sun has a chance to burn the moisture away, drying the grapes and concentrating their sugars and phenolic qualities. What distinguishes a fine Sauternes from a normal one is the producer’s willingness to wait and tend to the delicate botrytis-infected grapes through the end of the season.

      Other Dessert

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      Apart from the classics, we find many regional gems of different styles.

      Late harvest wines are probably the easiest to understand. Grapes are picked so late that the sugars build up and residual sugar remains after the fermentation process. Ice wine, a style founded in Germany and there referred to as eiswein, is an extreme late harvest wine, produced from grapes frozen on the vine, and pressed while still frozen, resulting in a higher concentration of sugar. It is becoming a specialty of Canada as well, where it takes on the English name of ice wine.

      Vin Santo, literally “holy wine,” is a Tuscan sweet wine made from drying the local white grapes Trebbiano Toscano and Malvasia in the winery and not pressing until somewhere between November and March.

      Rutherglen is an historic wine region in northeast Victoria, Australia, famous for its fortified Topaque and Muscat with complex tawny characteristics.

      PWR6410_1983 Item# 6410