Gorgeous burnt copper appearance. Floral, caramelly notes of dried apricots and oranges, candied pecans, creme brulee, citrus, honey, orange rind, toasted coconut, and a whiff of fish sauce. The '61 was never a heavyweight to begin with and surely it isn't what it once was, but this example was full, glyceriny, adequately balanced, with pleasant sweetness and a surprisingly long finish.
With a beautiful color, slightly discernible scents of flowers, spice, pineapple and crème brulee popped up. Too much acidity and not enough fruit after 50 years made this a wine to open if you have it, but pass on buying it if you don't. Stick to 1961 Red Bordeaux.
A Special Night at Taillevent (Taillevent Restaurant, Paris): An inspired birth year wine for two of the guests. Dark caramel in color, with dominant notes of pineapple, honey and citrus. A bit burnt if I am being honest, and clearly fading. Not much spine, but delivered enough the legendary Yquem sweetness and an impressively long finish for an off vintage.
Turning 50; a few 1961s (Scott & Kates; Redwood City, CA): Expectations were low for this bottle. Not a "great" vintage for Sauternes and there was some slight signs of past seepage from the capsule; however, this certainly over delivered. The color was the golden caramel hue one would expect at this age, yet the flavors were surprisingly fresh, vibrant and youthful. Marmalade, orange, honey and citrus. A bit of an orange/coconut note on the finish. Perhaps this did not posses a "great" acidic spine, but it was certainly more than adequate. Not thick and rich but still holding onto some nice sweetness. I really loved it.
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