(2019) There's no such thing as a poor vintage of Yquem, such is the care taken over the fruit selection and winemaking in even the worst vintage conditions, but although this 2002 is not rated as a 'top' Yquem, I thought it was absolutely outstanding. Loaded with smoky, dried apricot depths of Botrytis, there's also lovely exotic spice and marmalade/Seville orange brightness of fruit. More of that on the palate too, in an Yquem of great depth, burgeoning with bittersweet flavours that entirely fill the senses, and yet great freshness too, pinpoint and clear acidity leads into an extremely long finish. Marvellous and totally satisfying.
(2016) After 27 years (20 of them in my own cellar) this has a rich, burnished gold colour and subtley complex nose. A bouquet of honey and smoky tea, sesame or pumpkin seeds, a hint of fat, guava-like fruit. There are also saffron and other complex herb notes in a nose that unravels slowly. In the mouth this has shed some of its puppy fat, but still maintains and unctuous richness, honey and glycerine again, the barley sugar of botrytis, but there is an elegance, the so well defined lime acidity, trace of vanilla and toast, and enormously long finish. It's so hard to say how a wine like this will cellar - drink now or in 30 years perhaps? Price for a half bottle.
(2011) Six passes through the vineyard, 141g/l sugar and harvested late. Lovely apricot and barley sugar botrytis immediately evident. Delightful little leaf tea and orange notes. Rich and fragrant. Fabulous palate: really fresh, with opulent richness and that juicy nectarine elegance and soft honeyed notes. There's some exotic mango and white flower lift, the acidity is excellent, with a touch of nuttiness and really great length. This has fabulous elegance and richness in combination, and really vibrant character.
(2000) I've tasted this wine half a dozen times over the past 4 years or so since release. The colour is a surprisingly deep, glowing amber/gold - deeper than I recall. The dazzlingly aromatic nose seems to have clamped down a little, showing oak, fig and caramel and a little botrytis honey. A touch maderised perhaps? The palate displays much fresher flavours and a wonderful unctuous texture. Figgy fruit, very dark, very intense, with butterscotch and toffee, marmalade and honey. In the glass it really develops. Unexpected glimpses of mint, lime, peach kernel and peach. Wonderful length and purity of finish with the complex package of components persisting for minutes in the mouth. Superb.
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