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2000 vintage guide for Sauternes and Barsac

See Decanter's vintage guide for Sauternes and Barsac 2000

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Little botrytis: 2000 in Sauternes will be inferior to 1999 and the great 2001

Weather Conditions

The Sauternes region enjoyed the same hot weather from mid-July as the rest of Bordeaux. Some growers began picking as early as 11 September, as the grapes were ripe, but there was little botrytis at this stage. In early October some good quality grapes were picked, but heavy rain arrived on 12 October and dashed all hopes for a great crop. In Barsac, Ch Nairac reported a small quantity of ‘correct’ but unexciting wine. Estates with early ripening Sauvignon Blanc tended to fare slightly better than those planted solely with Semillon. At Yquem 90 percent of the crop was rejected, giving an average yield of a minuscule 2.5 hl/ha. 2000 in Sauternes will clearly be inferior to 1999 and the great 2001. There appears to be little regional variation within the Sauternais, since the October rains affected the whole region. Initially it seems that vines on sandy soils, being more precocious and receptive to botrytis, may have given riper wines than those planted on clay, but other factors, such as the severity of the selection, are likely to count for more than soil structure.

Best Appellations

Best Producers

In March 2001 Broustet, Coutet, Filhot, Guiraud, Rieussec, and Suduiraut showed well. But these are very early days, and the wines cannot be properly judged until the final selections have been made and the wines have been bottled.

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