No Château d’Yquem 2012

Chateau d'Yquem, Sauternes, Bordeaux. 1975.

Chateau d’Yquem, Sauternes, Bordeaux. 1975, copyright BKWine Photography

There will be no 2012 vintage of Château d’Yquem, the most famous Sauternes chateau. The conditions for the development of noble rot was bad this year, and the chateau’s director Pierre Lurton would rather refrain from making an Yquem wine than to make one with little concentration. Last time it happened was in 1992, says Drinks Business.

The grapes that were nonetheless harvested will instead be used to the chateau’s dry wine, Y d’Yquem. We have tasted it a few times and it is a fabulous wine. It is relatively dry, of course, but usually with a little residual sugar, maybe 7-10 grams. You have some honey character from the botrytis and a lot of complexity.

We have also received information from the producer organization for Sauternes & Barsac saying that those who will make a Sauternes in 2012 are pretty happy with the quality. The noble rot was slow to start and most of the chateaux harvested in October. Ripeness was uneven as was the attack on the grapes by the noble rot which made it very difficult to harvest. It was crucial to make a strict selection of the grapes. It will not be a vintage of great concentration, it is believed, but rather a vintage with finesse and elegance.

Glass and bottle of 2004 Chateau d'Yquem, Sauternes

Glass and bottle of 2004 Chateau d’Yquem, Sauternes, copyright BKWine Photography

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