Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes 2004 Front Label
Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes 2004 Front Label

Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes 2004

  • WS100
  • WE95
750ML / 0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

With six waves of picking spread over seven weeks and twenty-five working days, the 2004 vintage was complex, but well-rounded. It reflects the full gamut of Yquem's terroirs.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 100
Wine Spectator
Wonderful aromas of pineapple, apple and lemon, with loads of botrytis. Full-bodied, but very refined, superfresh and racy. Goes on and on. Fabulous. Incredible purity and brightness. Like a perfectly cut diamond. Pierre Lurton, the manager of Yquem as well as Cheval-Blanc, really wanted to mark his arrival at the legendary estate, so he went to draconian lengths to deliver something superb in 2004. 95-100 points
WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
This is a beautiful Yquem, not huge or powerful, but with crispness, honey and freshness, very expressive of the year. The higher than usual proportion of Sauvignon in the blend gives it a real lift.
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Chateau d'Yquem

Chateau d'Yquem

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Chateau d'Yquem, France
Chateau d'Yquem  Winery Image

Château d’Yquem is an extraordinary place, at the very heart of Sauternes, with a hundred hectares of vineyards are planted on a mosaic of different soils. All the conditions are there to grow exceptional grapes and achieve the finest noble rot, the famous botrytis cinerea.

Through a sublimation process, the grapes reach a level a richness in taste and aromas that is simply unique in the world. Yquem preciously protects its selective harvesting secret, carried out by a team of devoted highly experienced local pickers, who have received their ancestral knowledge from the generations that came before them. Therefore, only the best grapes sublimated by botrytis cinerea are picked, because this is the golden rule at Yquem: never look for simplification, or shortcuts, and accept the risk of losing everything.

This is the price to pay to achieve excellence.


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Sauternes Wine

Bordeaux, France

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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.

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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.

VCFBWP_1015_04_2004 Item# 95142

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