TN: Two Sauternes...(short/boring)

Tried these two last week:

  1. Ch.LaTourBlanche 1er Cru Donation Osiris AC: Sauternes (MeBaC; 13%) Bommes 2003: Med.dark gold color; strong botrytis/apricotty/peachy some creme brulee/caramel bit Semillon/ripe/figgy/slight herbal bit Fr.oak/butterscotchy slight earthy/dusty complex nose; bit volatile/fumey some botrytis/peachy/apricotty/orangey butterscotch/creme brulee ripe figgy/Semillon bit tart complex flavor; very long/lingering strong peachy/botrytis/apricotty bit creme brulee/butterscotchy vanilla/oak finish; a bit on the tart/lean side (as typical of Ch.LTB) & not as rich/lush as most Sauternes but quite a good Sauternes that should go many more yrs.

  1. Bedrock Lachryma Montis Botrytized OldVine Semillon SonomaVlly (Plntd: 1896; 12.0%; SaH: 40.2 Brix; Frmtd: 85% new Fr.oak; RS: 20.0 gm/100ml) Sonoma 2011: Deep golden bit cloudy color; very intense botrytis/peachy/apricotty/orangey some toasty/smokey/Fr.oak fairly complex nose; somewhat tart very rich/lush/sweet some figgy/fig newton/ripe Semillin intense botrytis/peachy/apricotty some toasty/Fr.oak bit creme brulee/butterscotchy bit complex flavor; very long/lingering intense botrytis/peachy/apricotty some toasty/butterscotch/Fr.oak very rich/lush/sweet ripe/Semillon/figgy finish; a terrific dessert wine loaded w/ botrytis but still some ripe Semillon character unlike many Calif TBA Riesling.

A wee BloodyPulpit:

  1. These were served at my Harrington tasting last week. With a Loisen Crema Panettone served w/ an EggNog Creme Anglis.
    I hadn’t had the Bedrock since it’s first release. I believe this is the only one they made. It was dominated by the botrytis yet still showed some Semillon fruit. Not quite as interesting as the LTB, though. Both will go out yrs.

You’re bad, advertising two Sauternes [grin.gif]

I haven’t had the 03 LTB in a few years, but your note stirs my memory bank. I haven’t tried the Lachryma yet, but your note makes me want to move that up the priority chain.

All my best wishes for the holidays, Tom


Thanks, Mike. There will be wine involved… good wine.

Still short and boring Tom? I’m not getting that, but have a great holiday season and Go Cats!

Re Lachryma Montis, I sure hope Morgan makes this again. flirtysmile

Excellent notes as always Tom. Andrew Johnstone was generous enough to pop an 11 Lachryma Montis a couple months ago and we were both blown away. Going to try and save the couple bottles I have for a long time.

Fyi, Morgan also made a 2009 vintage. Like Mike said…I hope he makes another!

There must be bottle variation or transportation issues with the 2003 LaTour Blanche which is one of the sweetest Sauternes I have ever tasted. I’ve had it seven times (from full bottles had halves) over the past 12 years, most recently in August, and it always has verged on too sweet. My last note was “too much of a good thing.” I’m hoping this turns out like the 1947 Sauternes and plan to wait another decade before I try another.

I haven’t had the 03 in 4 years. Here are my quick notes:

"2003 Chateau La Tour Blanche

Popped and poured this one. Apricot, honey, vanilla and fig. Some pineapple and treacle get added on the taste and this wine hasn’t changed much. It is all on one level with little in the way of sophistication, but rich and plum-full of flavour. Not a thinker’s wine, it delivers what the vintage offered."

So it seems I got at the flavours that Tom found, but the richness that you’ve commented on, David. The only 2003 that has shown real balance for me was the Climens.

While I couldn’t find my old issue with Steve Tanzer’s review, which steered me to this wine, I did find it on K&L’s website: “Enticing bright yellow-gold color. Subdued but very pure aromas of orange peel, apricot, honey and spices. Supersweet, fat and spicy; wonderfully round, chewy and unctuous. As thick and '03-like as this is, it remains fresh and lively. Not the last word in complexity but this fine-grained wine is delicious already, and finishes with superb, palate-staining persistence.”

As for the other 2003 Sauternes, I haven’t had Climens, I have enjoyed Rieussec and, of course, d’Yquem. In 2013 my wine group tasted a bunch of 2003 Sauternes (either six or eight if I recall) and half were very good and half out of balance. Unfortunately, I don’t remember which fell into the latter group.

Have you had the '03 Yquem? It’s still primary and youthful (and thus still oaky), but delicious and an excellent vintage.

Glad to hear the check-in on the Bedrock - I’ve got a bottle Each of the ‘09 and ‘11. Not in any hurry to drink and will be curious to see if they develop into something special in 10 years or so.

As for the ‘03 Sauternes, I generally find them out of balance - esp LTB and Suduiraut. I’ve had terrific bottles of ‘03 Climens and so-so bottles - completely dependent on how much acid is there to balance the opulence.