x
  • Country ranking ?

    1 454
  • Producer ranking ?

    9
  • Decanting time

    5h
  • When to drink

    now to 2040
  • Food Pairing

    Sea Scallop and Passion Fruit Carpaccio

The Story

The Château Coutet vines' deep roots extract elements from its terroir to give the grapes freshness, richness and strength. For this reason the estate carries the name "Coutet,” derived from the Gascon's word for knife, to signify the fresh, lively and crisp palate that is the wine's signature style. In its youth, the wines display generous notes of white flowers, citrus fruits, honey and vanilla. Ginger and pineapple are very typical aromas in a young Château Coutet. Time brings out deeper, warmer notes in which spices combine with exotic nectars and candied fruits, such as gingerbread mingled with marmalade. Age also enhances the harmony of its roasted Botrytis character and its distinct aromas to give Château Coutet a delicate and unique bouquet that is unsurpassed.

Area under vines: 38.5 hectares (95 acres)

Grape varieties:

- 75% Sémillon

- 23% Sauvignon blanc

- 2% Muscadelle

Soil: Clay with a limestone sub-soil

Average age of the vines: 38 years

Planting density: 7,500 plants per hectare (3,000 plants per acre)

Vineyard management: "Taille à Cot" (traditional Sauternes pruning) and rational cultivation

Harvest: By hands (successive passes, called tries)

Average yield: 9 hL/ha (0.9 ton per acre)

Ageing: 18 months in French oak barrels, 70 to 100% new 

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Vintage 2009

Weather conditions:
The year 2009 was characterized by a warmer and drier climate than usual. A particularly sunny August, followed by an Indian summer, allowed for the berries to reach an exceptional maturation level. On September 18th, rainfalls marked the beginning of the development of Botrytis cinerea on very ripe berries. This was the first indication of a great harvest to come, providing the foundation to a monumental vintage for the region and for the property. Only five passages through the estate's plots were necessary, with 70% of the fruit picked on the third tries. The short and condensed harvest resulted in a rare purity that gives today the wine strength, complexity and freshness. This wine's style is fully representative of Bordeaux's 2009 vintage characteristics.

Harvest dates: September 18 to October 22
Tries: 6 manual successive passes
Number of days of harvest: 28
Grape varieties: 75% Sémillon, 23% Sauvignon Blanc, 2% Muscadelle
Fermentation: 100% barrel fermented, 100% new French oak
Ageing: 18 month in new French oak barrels
Estate bottled: June 2011

Tasting notes:

A deep golden color, the vintage's first aromatic sensation impresses one by its richness, mixing the typical notes of a beautiful botrytisation (citrus, exotic and candied fruits, as well as hints of honey) with more delicate, slightly spicy, subtle and elegant touches. On the palate, a great complexity springs up, blending volume and roundness with notes of candied fruits, plum brandy, cherry plum liquor, as well as more classic notes typical of the ageing process such as well-integrated vanilla, caramel, toffee, but also mild spices and white pepper. The finish is expressive, powerful, warm, and quite long, giving back a very pleasant freshness thanks to notes of candied orange zests.

The Coutet 2009 is a sensational effort from Philippe Baly and his team. It has a fragrant nose of honey, verbena tea, pineapple, frangipane and apple-blossom, well defined if needing a little more vigor at the moment. The palate is vibrant on the entry, informed by touches of apricot and orange peel, very focused and tensile towards the long, sensuous, viscous finish. It has the same minerality exuded by Doisy-Daëne and reminds me of a stellar '62 tasted just a few weeks previously. A magnificent Coutet. Robert Parker, The Wine Advocate, April 2010, 96 – 98/100

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Written Notes

The vintage saw a large attack of botrytis – understandable that Aline Baly from Coutet refers to this as the 'new 1989'. An extra degree of richness here. There is toffee and tropical notes and very ripe peaches. Has pure crystalline flavours. A very long finish here. It is clean, fresh, youthful and balanced. Really impressive. Loved it, though obviously still very young. Recommended to match a cheese plate (always think that is a bit of a broad, cover-all, cop out, but it would be fun to try it with a range of good cheese).
  • 95p

Information

Origin

Barsac, Sauternes

Vintage Quality

Outstanding

Highlights

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