Le Grand Chai Sauternes (half bottle)
Sémillon, Sauvignon, Muscadelle • Sauternes AOC
Jean-Marc Sauboua and the team makes outstanding wines from nearly all the grand appellations of Bordeaux – from Saint-Emilion Grand Cru to Pauillac and Margaux – so it seemed remiss not to tackle a wondrous sweetie from Sauternes. This gorgeous half-bottle gem is the delicious outcome.
Sauternes is special because it relies upon 'noble rot' - royal among fungi, it appears in some Bordeaux vineyards in autumn, causing grapes to shrivel and their flavour, sugar and acidity to intensify. It doesn't happen every year – only when the conditions are right. It takes painstaking care to make each bottle, too, as yields are so tiny.
Le Grand Chai Sauternes is a blend of three cuvées that Jean-Marc picked out at the annual blind tasting at La Maison du Sauternes. Every year, each property in the appellation, from the dizzy heights of Premier Cru down, donates a portion of their wine to this official 'house' to help pay for promotion of the appellation. A trio stood out above all for their amazing concentration, finely focussed fruit and all important acidity. Together, JMS felt they would make the perfect balanced wine. Sémillon, Sauvignon and Muscadelle, fermented then aged in cask, this is a sweet white of the highest calibre. Serve with blue cheese or a fruit tart.
Crême brûlée, apricots and orange blossom aromas. Sweet, creamy yet refreshing with orange marmalade flavours.
Appellation: Sauternes AOC, Bordeaux
Grapes: Sémillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Muscadelle
Style: Sweet dessert wine
Colour: Bright yellow gold