TN: 2005 Sauternes: A very good vintage

Notes from our monthly tasting group. The wines overall didn’t seem to show as well as other young Sauternes vintages I have had. Part of the issue may have been cold serving temps, as each wine got better as it warmed. Certainly, you’ll see a lot of ‘+’ in my notes, because there is a lot of upside potential here in this vintage.

2005 Doisy Daene Alright, Homey’s gotta get even more Barsac into his cellar, especially i they taste like this. Spice notes, white flowers, tropical fruits, lemon zest. The body is a bit lighter than the others, but on its own merits it is dynamite with good acidity and my pick or most versatile. 95 points.

2005 Guiraud An estate that will always rank high in the romance factor for me since my wonderful dinner in the vineyard there. However, this wine didn’t show as well as I would have liked. At first, it was closed and unbalanced with not a lot of there there. As it warmed up more fruit came out and it was pretty nice. This wine will never be great, but with some age will be very good. My initial score was 88 and with time my final score was a 92.

2005 La Tour Blanche This wine is also reticent with the fruit a bit hard to find. Not as much spice or bakers notes as I find in young La Tour Blanche in the past. The 01 and 03 were much, much better at this age. Still, it has the structure and concentration to improve, I think. 90+

2005 Suduiraut Another reticent wine that got better as it warmed up, and I think they were served a bit too cold. This had dried fruit aromas and the spice box was very nice. Like the other Sauternes in the line-up, it was rich and not cloying. This has potential to grow. 92+

2005 Bastor Lamontagne By far the lightest color of the night, a light green, almost like a Vino Verdhe. The fruit and honey was nice, but not concentrated enough to conceal the ETOH notes. A nice wine, but not great. 87 points

2005 Climens Great balance in this wine. Lemon notes are forefront here, with honey and lanolin notes. Not at all complex, but this is rich for a Climens and there is a great upside potential here. Room to grow. 94+

2005 Rieussec The balance in this wine is exquisite. Best balanced wine of the night, in fact. A nice acidic grip balanced with the most honey notes, and nice fruit. In fact, I like this wine so much I am seriously considering trading some 2001 for this, as I have none in the cellar. Yes, this wine is that good. 95+

2005 de Fargues The lightest of the Sauternes. This had nice spice notes, and seems to be complete and more evolved than the others. Very good. 93 points

1989 Guiraud An extra thrown in. A drier wine, very evolved with a darker orange color. Tasted like orange marmalade. Nice, not complex but good. 89 points.

Thanks for the notes Bob!

I went heavy on Rieussec, Climens, Suduiraut and doisy daene. DD is such a bargain year in and year out and the 05’s can still be had for fair prices.

you did very well. The suduiraut showed the least well of that group but it was still excellent, and like the Climens, I expect it to climb a couple of points higher before it is all said and done.
I love the Doisy Daene, and bought some super cheap 2009’s as a result. The balance on the Rieussec is perfect, and don’t be shocked if in a decade or so people are trying it side by side with the 2001 and trying to figure out which is better.

I’m glad I picked up a bunch of the 2005 Doisy Daene recently. Tried one and it was great!

Sorry a little late to this, Bob, just was doing a search for sauternes notes and came across this post. Thanks for your always-excellent notes.

One of the few times that I am very much in a different place than you on Sauternes, I tried the Rieussec about 3-4 times and was distinctly underwhelmed each of those times—I ended up giving back the rest of my allocation. Now I wonder if it was a certain shipment that was somehow affected (certainly they weren’t corked or identifiably flawed).

I do love the Climens, I think it will be a top wine and have loaded up on it, I have conversely adored it all of the 3 times that I’ve tried it. I agree with you that the LTB will need some time, as will some of these others.

Maybe I need to see if I can get my hands on some Doisy-Daene–sounds uber-yummy.

Thanks again, hope you’re keeping well.

Great notes Bob. As I recently bought some 05 Daene and have been contemplating popping one, how much air would you suggest or just a pop and pour?

In my opinion, you can pop and pour, although I liked it best after a day audouzing in the refrigerator.