x
  • Country ranking ?

    17
  • Producer ranking ?

    1
  • Decanting time

    4h
  • When to drink

    now to 2050
  • Food Pairing

    Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Lemon Curd

The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.

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There are 10,000 cases of this perfect sweet white Bordeaux. The 2001 Yquem reveals a hint of green in its light gold color. While somewhat reticent aromatically, with airing, it offers up honeyed tropical fruit, orange marmalade, pineapple, sweet creme brulee, and buttered nut-like scents. In the mouth, it is full-bodied with gorgeously refreshing acidity as well as massive concentration and unctuosity. Everything is uplifted and given laser-like focus by refreshing acidity. This large-scaled, youthful Yquem appears set to take its place among the most legendary vintages of the past, and will age effortlessly for 75+ years. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2100+.

Score: 100 Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (158), April 2005

The greatest young Yquem I have ever tasted from bottle. Yellow, with a golden hue and an almost green tint. Intense aromas of botrytis, spices and blanched almonds follow through to honey, maple syrup, dried apricot and pineapple. Full-bodied, sweet, thick and powerful, with layers of fruit and a bright, lively finish. Coats the palate yet remains exciting. So balanced and refined, showing the pedigree that only this Sauternes estate can deliver. Best after 2012. 10,000 cases made.

Score: 100 James Suckling, WineSpectator.com, September 2005

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The Story

The pleasure derived from tasting Yquem is difficult to describe.

It offers a myriad of well-balanced, complex flavours that generate even more harmonies over time. The impression that remains is reminiscent of a quote from Frédéric Dard "the silence that follows a piece by Mozart, in which the listener remains suffused with the music". This reflects the fact that Château d'Yquem stays on the palate for a remarkable long time, providing a unique, prolonged pleasure. There is a lovely expression in French to describe Yquem's tremendously long aftertaste: il fait la queue du paon, which means that it spreads out like a peacock's tail.

 

It is always difficult to describe wine-tasting experiences with any precision. The senses of sight, smell, taste and touch are all stimulated virtually at the same time. While gifted tasters can identify some of the aromas and flavours in a glass of Yquem in an effort to define its complexity, they never really succeed in communicating its essence or explaining its mystery. Mere analysis, whether chemical or organoleptic, is not sufficient to account for Yquem's greatness. Yquem tells a unique story... It starts with the bouquet. Although not always very outgoing in young vintages, it is marked by fruit (apricot, mandarin, and occasionally tropical fruit) and oak (vanilla and toasty aromas). Older vintages, on the other hand, have an extraordinarily complex fragrance as soon as the bottle is opened, with hints of dried fruit (dried apricot, prune, stewed fruit, and marmalade), spice (cinnamon, saffron, and liquorice), and even flowers (lime blossom, etc.). The first impression of Château d'Yquem on the palate is always very silky, and often sumptuous. It then fills out, "coating the palate". This fine wine has a strong, but never overbearing character, with great elegance and poise. It always maintains a balance between sugar and acidity (sweetness and freshness). A touch of bitterness can also contribute to the overall harmony. Château d'Yquem's aftertaste is legendary, and it tells another story, which lasts and lasts…

Certain connoisseurs consider it outrageous to drink a young Yquem and believe that opening such a monumental wine before its thirtieth birthday is tantamount to a sacrilege. Others, on the contrary, think that Yquem can be enjoyed at all stages in its life.

 

Chateau d`Yquem is often described as the greatest sweet wine in the world. After centuries of family ownership, Yquem was was bought by Louis Vuitton-Moët-Hennessy in 1999. Its former owner and director Alexandre de Lur-Saluce remains in charge. Yquem is located on the highest hill in Sauternes and enjoys the best growing conditions in the whole appellation. The 110-hectare vineyard is planted with 80% Sémillon and 20% Sauvignon Blanc. Only fully botrytized fruit is picked by the 150 highly skilled pickers and yields are so low that each vine produces only one glass of wine. Yquem is fermented in oak barrels (100% new) and is left in barriques to mature for up to 36 months. Intensely opulent when young, Yquem develops an extraordinary complexity and exotic richness when fully mature, with the best vintages lasting for over 50 years. Château d'Yquem is classified as a 1er Cru Classé supérieur.

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Wine Information

When the Bordeaux region wines were classified in 1855, only Château d’Yquem received a classification of its own, Premier Grand Cru Classé, higher than anybody else. Even if the estate could use that classification on its labels, it does not. Today, the estate produces the best wine in its area, in the opinion of some experts the best in Bordeaux. Its location on the highest spot in Sauternes has created a unique micro-climate that varies a lot from year to year. This requires an extremely careful and precise winemaking process, and during poor years, the estate does not produce anything at all.

- “The climatic conditions during the growth period, and the harvest period in particular, when we wait for noble rot to affect the grapes, give our wines their unique personality. This natural process is entirely dependent on weather. We can only decide when and how to harvest” said Alexandre de Lur-Saluces.

In difficult years, harvesting may take up to 8 to 10 weeks. The grapes are still harvested by hand only when they are completely covered by noble rot, not before. Often, as many as ten picks are needed during one harvest. If the grapes are not perfectly ripe, they are left unpicked. Even after winemaking and barrel maturation the wine may be rejected if it does not develop as expected. This happened, for example, in 1978 and 1979, when more than half of the wine was rejected, and occasionally the entire vintage is eliminated: 9 vintages of Yquem are totally absent from the 20th century: 1910, 1915, 1930, 1951, 1952, 1964, 1972, 1974, and 1992.

- “Most people think that taking care of a world-famous estate like Château d’Yquem does not require any effort. Just like other companies, changing world markets affect us too, not to speak of the weather. The year 1974 was one of the most difficult in my time. That depressing year we were not able to produce a single bottle of Yquem and managed to sell only four cases, of our other vintages” Alexandre de Lur-Saluces reminisced.

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Average Bottle Price

2019 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010
611€ +17.3% 521€ +4.0% 501€ -5.3% 529€ +17.8% 449€ -11.1% 505€ -10.6% 565€ -4.1% 589€ +15.3% 511€

This data comes from the FINE Auction Index, a composite of average prices for wines sold at commercial auctions in 20 countries. The average prices from each year have been collected since 1990. This chart plots the index value of the average price of the wines.

Tasting note

color

Full, Gold and Bright

ending

Long, Flavorful and Smooth

flavors

Apricot, Waxy, Coffee, Toasty, Honey and New-oak

nose

Intense, Complex, Fresh and Seductive

recommend

Yes

taste

Average in Acidity, High alcohol content, High tannin, Concentrated, Well-structured, Complex, Youthful, Medium-bodied, Rich, Fresh, Harmonious, Sweet and Silky tannins

Verdict

Masterpiece and Well-rounded

Written Notes

Wow. It just keeps getting better and better. For me, it has been a 100-pointer from the first time I saw it, back at release. I love this wine and for me, I thought it the greatest young wine, of any ilk, I had ever seen, at the time of release. As it matures, slowly, it seems to me that this will be the greatest Yquem of all time. It is incredible. Luscious notes of apricots, peaches, stonefruits. Balanced and complex. Surely, well cellared bottles have 80 years ahead of them.
  • 100p
2001 Yquem (99) Now I must confess, I donâ•˙t drink much sweet wine, and although I have long adored ancient Yquems, they just donâ•˙t make it into my rotation that often. And when they do, they tend to be older, but a 2001 this summer in Switzerland really made me stand up and take notice. It is rare that a young wine leaves a ╢greatest wine of my lifeâ• impression, ie 99 points, but this Yquem did just that. Impressive, and relatively easy to acquire. Even though I am not a big drinker of sweet wines, it was hard not to notice the greatness of the 2001 Yquem.  This was so rich, so oily, so special, with coconut and cocoa butter and an exotic passionfruit, peach and apricot three-way unfolding dramatically in front of me. So creamy, so incredible, it was much more than just so so (99).
  • 99p
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Information

Origin

Sauternes, Bordeaux

Vintage Quality

Extraordinary

Value For Money

Very good

Investment potential

Excellent

Fake factory

There is a possibility

Glass time

3h

Inside Information

Chateau d'Yquem is world famous for its sweet wine, which commands some of the highest prices on the market. Established in 1593, the chateau is located in the Sauternes region of Bordeaux and is the only property given the highest rating of Premier Cru Superieur. The estate contains a 110-hectare vineyard planted with 80% Semillon and 20% Sauvignon Blanc. The wines are created from botrytized fruit that is picked by hand in several passes by up to 150 harvesters. The "Noble Rot" (Botrytis Cinera) depletes the water content in the berry, concentrating the natural sugar levels. The resultant wine's high sugar content is matched by high level of acidity, allowing the wine to age for more than 50 years in the best vintages. The opulence of Yquem's youth turns complex, rich and honeyed as it ages. Chateau d'Yquem's second wine, Ygrec Y, is a dry Bordeaux Blanc.

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Highlights

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Wine Moments

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 d'Yquem 2001  has updated wine and vintage information

3y 5m ago

99p
 Pekka Nuikki / Editor of the Fine Wine Magazines, Pro (Finland)  tasted  d'Yquem 2001  ( Château d'Yquem )

"Tasting is over...the best wine for the event was Yquem 2001 -98 points."

11y 2m ago

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