1976 Rieussec, Sauternes

SKU #970033 90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 This is one of the most controversial vintages of Rieussec. Very dark gold in color, some observers have said it is oxidized and is falling apart. Despite the dark color, the remarkable taste seems to suggest that this wine has a way to go. The huge nose of toasted almonds, caramel, chocolate, and brown sugar does exhibit a trace of volatile acidity, so technocrats are likely to be turned off. Incredibly rich and full bodied, with a honeyed, luscious texture and extremely intense flavors, this exotic, hugely proportioned wine (15% alcohol) can only be served as a dessert. The yield at Rieussec in 1976 was 2.5 hectoliters per hectare, which is approximately one third of a glass of wine per vine. This is a bold, rather overblown style of Sauternes, but I love it. (RP)  (1/1998)

Jancis Robinson

 Bright tawny. Strong, complex nose of caramel and burnt sugar. On the palate it tastes much more youthful, appetising and vibrant with a lovely creamy texture. As we have noted before here, Rieussec often darkens much more rapidly than most other Sauternes. No-one should be deterred by the dark colour of this wine. It still has a way to go. 18/20 points.  (1/2006)

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Price: $129.99
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Additional Information:

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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