1971 de Malle, Sauternes

SKU #1321037

The chateau (formerly owned by the proprietors of Yquem) goes back to the 17th century (it was built by Jacques de Malle) and it is the only listed historic monument in Sauternes. The vineyards are situated in the communes of Preignac and of Fargues. Only 28 hectares of the vineyard area of Château de Malle are dedicated to the making of Sauternes. The vines are planted on the undulating slopes of a plateau of medium altitude on gravelly clay soil on a siliceous sub-soil. The vines (69 % Semillon, 28 % Sauvignon and 3% Muscadelle) have an average age of between 30 and 40 years and are planted at a density of 6,600 vines per hectare. Each year the fruit of the vine patiently awaits the progressive invasion of botrytis cinerea. The vintage, in accordance with tradition, is still brought in by hand by means of successive selective pickings. Each individual grape is only snipped off once it has achieved a perfect state of 'rôti,' that is to say, when it is shrivelled up and fully concentrated. Three to five pickings are usually necessary at the property. This varies depending upon all the combined conditions for making great Sauternes.

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Varietal:

Semillon

- A rich, viscous, full-flavored but subtly-scented and botrytis-prone white grape, Sémillon reaches magical heights when infected with "noble rot" and combined with even small amounts of the aromatic and high-acid Sauvignon Blanc to make Sauternes, one of the world's most revered and longest-lived wines, and in the sweet wines of surrounding regions like Barsac. Sémillon's most famous incarnation is in the wines of Château d'Yquem, one of the world's most expensive wines, and one that has been known to evolve for centuries. It frequently dominates, but not by much, in the oak-aged whites of Bordeaux's Graves and Pessac-Léognan, creating honeyed and viscous wines that are unlike any others. Elsewhere in Bordeaux and around France it takes on a supporting role in the wines of Entre-Deux-Mers and the Médoc. While planted throughout France, Europe, California and Washington, Sémillon's role as underling usually keeps it out of the spotlight with a few winery-specific exceptions. However, the grape is allowed to shine in Australia's Hunter Valley, where it is used to make an elegant dry wine often called, perplexingly, Hunter Valley Riesling. It also makes some incredible dry, oaked wines from the Barossa and lovely stickies in the style of Sauternes.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

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Specific Appellation:

Sauternes

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