Chateau d'Yquem has said it will not release its 2013 Sauternes during the traditional period of the Bordeaux en primeur campaign, despite the wine's high rating among critics.
The 2013 harvest at Chateau d’Yquem. Sauternes was one of the best performing regions of Bordeaux.
Chateau d’Yquem has decided to ‘delay’ the release of its 2013 vintage to Bordeaux’s negociants, a spokesperson for the chateau’s owner, LVMH, confirmed to Decanter.com.
Negociants in Bordeaux broke the news to merchants yesterday (12 May), with one explaining that it has decided to emulate the strategy used for the 2011 vintage, which it did not release until September 2013.
The move means that Yquem will have missed the annual Bordeaux en primeur campaigns for the third consecutive year, albeit the estate’s management chose not to make a 2012 vintage due to a lack of quality grapes.
This year’s Bordeaux en primeur campaign is now in its final stages, with many merchants reporting that a 2013 vitnage book-ended by poor weather has failed to ignite significant interest from consumers. Some merchants have blamed chateaux for not cutting prices sufficiently to garner demand.
Chateau d’Yquem was the joint-highest scoring wine of the 2013 vintage in ratings published by Decanter last month. It got 18.5 points, only equalled by Haut-Brion Blanc, a dry white, in what has generally been regarded as a better year for Bordeaux whites versus reds.
Yquem’s director, Pierre Lurton, could not be immediately reached for comment.
He has previously reiterated his commitment to Bordeaux’s en primeur system, stating that Yquem has no intention of following Chateau Latour’s example of holding back wines until they are deemed ready to drink.
Written by Chris Mercer