Nairac 2003

SubregionSauternes and Barsac
ColourSweet White

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Tasting Notes

Ex-chateau bottle tasted blind in Sauternes. Nicolas Tari produced one of the finest Sauternes of the vintage and at ten years of age, it continues to show class. It has a very intense bouquet of orange cordial, quince, fresh lemon and yellow flowers - a slightly confected nose, like walking into a sweet shop. The palate has a candied entry, almost medicinal in terms of its sweetness with an unctuous, decadent finish that successfully musters the acidity to keep it in balance - against the odds! This is an excellent Nairac. Drink now-2025.

Score: 93Neal Martin, (207), June 2013

Score: 90Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (164), April 2006

Score: 90/93Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (158), April 2005

It is against my better judgment to taste the sweet wines of Barsac and Sauternes at such an early age, as I find they typically require at least 12 months to reveal the definition/delineation so essential in these creamy, creme brulee, and honeysuckle-flavored offerings. Nevertheless, because this vintage is so highly regarded, I tasted through most of the top estates. The 2003s appear to be somewhat in the style of the 1990s, with high levels of residual sugar (higher than 2001 for the most part) as well as botrytis, low acidity, and fat, full-bodied personalities. This region’s harvest began extremely early (early September), and was completely finished within three weeks. It does not appear that the nobleness and racy richness of the 2001 vintage will be found in the 2003s, but readers who like the big, flamboyant, over the top style of the 1990s will enjoy the 2003s even more than I did.

Unlike most of my red wine tastings, this offering was only tasted once. Readers should keep in mind that this a very early, pre-bottling judgment from very unevolved wine that is not nearly as defined and easy to evaluate as the reds.

Score: 90/93Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (152), April 2004

Score: 85/88James Suckling, Wine Spectator (April 04), April 2004

Looks like honey. Marked VA on the nose. Most unusual wine which is almost over the top in terms of sweetness. Almost stewed rather than fresh fruit quality. Difficult to mark. Juicy fruit. Not great length and perhaps too little acidity and a little simple - baked apples. Certainly unctuous if its richness alone you seek.

Score: 16.5Jancis Robinson MW,, August 2005

Concentrated but with an excellent vitality; beautifully balanced rich Barsac style, intensely sweet but very well-contained; long, complex honey, fig, raisin and citrus zest flavours, superb aromatic persistence; still unformed, but most promising.

Score: 17.5Michael Schuster, The World of Fine Wine (1), April 2004

Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.