2001 Chateau d'Yquem
Superlatives are often not enough when it comes to describing Chateau d'Yquem. Standing alone as the only Premier Cru Superieur ranked sauternes property, Chateau d'Yquem is situated in the epicentre of prime sweet wine production in France. Their unique position, and wealth of soil profiles, allows d'Yquem to produce wines of enormous complexity with consistent accumulation of botrytis often in years when others struggle.
I have had the very good fortune to taste the 2001 d'Yquem perhaps a dozen times since its release and have never been less than absolutely floored by its combination of poise, purity, precision and layer upon intricate, jaw-dropping layer of flavor nuances. It is among a very small clutch of incredible wines that crash through the 100-point ceiling and rocket beyond the stratosphere! A testament to that magic that can be created when an uncommonly great vintage for Sauternes brings out the best of an extraordinary vineyard and is skillfully, sensitively crafted, the 2001 is a true wine rarity that must be tried to be believed.
Pale to medium lemon-gold, the nose is simply WOW—an absolute show-stopper, delivering vibrant, youthful lime cordial, pink grapefruit and lemon meringue pie scents followed up by suggestions of chamomile tea, saffron, cassis and nutmeg plus wafts of marzipan, crushed rocks and beeswax. The palate is beyond-belief intense, offering a myriad of decadent citrus fruit preserves and earthy/mineral-inspired nuances, instilling incredible depth, all punctuated by profound freshness and finishing epically long and exquisitely delicious. The alcohol this vintage is 13.6%, while the residual sugar is a whopping 150 grams per liter, beautifully balanced by a total acidity of 4.5 grams per liter of H2SO4. Obviously, the longer readers are willing to cellar this, the more they will get of that ethereal tertiary complexity/experience. This said, for those who love great Sauternes in its youthful/primary flushes, even at this very early stage in its evolution, the multifaceted 2001 d'Yquem will not disappoint.
Lisa Perrotti-Brown - Wine Advocate (Aug 2019)
What a pure wine, with honey, caramel, cooked apple, bon bon, and pear tart. Dried apricots and peaches develop with time in the glass. What a palate, it is very sweet and rich at the impact, but then it’s dense and opulent like a Grand Cru Burgundy, think Montrachet. Apples, honey, and pineapples with hints of mango on the palate. This is an incredible wine, a real dream, a legend. 150 grams of RS.
The greatest young Yquem I have ever tasted from bottle. Yellow, with a golden hue and an almost green tint. Intense aromas of botrytis, spices and blanched almonds follow through to honey, maple syrup, dried apricot and pineapple. Full-bodied, sweet, thick and powerful, with layers of fruit and a bright, lively finish. Coats the palate yet remains exciting. So balanced and refined, showing the pedigree that only this Sauternes estate can deliver. Best after 2012. 10,000 cases made.