This weekend my husband and I met an old childhood friend of mine in Brussels who was there for work. Two Italian friends of his, whom I had never met but had heard a lot about, flew up to see our friend in common. It was a fantastic weekend of good people, good food, good conversation and a lot of laughs. We were 3 nationalities (French, American, Italian) speaking 4 languages (French, English, Italian and Spanish) to communicate. One of my highlights of the weekend, and I think for others too, was a bottle of Guiraud 1990 that I brought to drink with foie gras that my husband and I had made. We drank it for aperitif before going out for dinner one night. The non-French residents in the group had never had a Sauternes and were completely impressed by its complexity and power. This wasn’t any Sauternes, Guiraud is a 1er cru classé and 1990 is an excellent year for Sauternes.
I couldn’t believe how young the wine seemed. The color was bright golden and brilliant. The nose was complex with notes of honey, orange rind, oil and alcohol. The aromas were fresh, not more concentrated as is often the case with older Sauternes. It was very sweet like a wine from the past 5 years, not a 22-year-old wine. The wine coated the mouth with an oil feel and the honey and orange flavors became more pronounced. It was a real pleasure for everyone.
Château Guiraud was classed as a 1st growth wine in 1855, only Chateau d’Yquem ranks higher than the 1st growths. The chateau was rundown in 20th century until a family from Canada purchased it in 1981. They replanted the vines, reequipped the cellar and starting making wines on par with the legendary Château d’Yquem in 1983. They had utmost respect for the terroir, the vines and creating a balanced ecosystem around the vines to naturally fight off unwanted pests. Their yields are 12 hectoliters/hectare, well below the 25 hl/ha that they are allowed to produce. This allows each vine to develop to its full potential in a natural environment.
Philippe ROUX, owner of SoDivin, always says that some of the best deals in the SoDivin cellar are Sauternes from 1988, 1989 and 1990. They really are phenomenal and the prices are quite reasonable for the quality of the wine.
Here is a link to our Châteu Guiraud Sauternes in stock
And here are links to these 3 excellent vintages :