Alexandre de Lur Saluces, the Sauternes sniper

Tuesday December 19 2017 by Vitisphere

- Photo credit : Alexandre Abellan (Vitisphere)

As former executive of Château d’Yquem, Alexandre de Lur Saluces is a custodian of Sauternes and takes a shot at initiatives that do not respect the prestige of the noble rot wine with all the grandeur becoming of his station. The ‘C’ dans le Vin’ debate at the Cité du Vin in Bordeaux on December 12 was a perfect illustration of his approach. The current owner of Château de Fargues responded to comments by journalist Jérôme Baudouin of the Revue du Vin de France, with as many anathemas.

What did the creator of the Y de Yquem label think of developing dry white wines? “It was a whim. I did not consider it to be a very important goal. In some ways it is a desperate, and despairing solution…” How about trying new ways of drinking Sauternes by turning it into an ingredient for cocktails? “It reminds me of an assassination. It really is drowning the baby, it’s disheartening”. Or changing the bottle format to make it smaller, like a tube maybe? “It’s an artificial solution. That’s not the issue,” he claimed.

A fabulous miracle that deserves respect

There are unquestionably marketing problems because we probably have not breathed sufficient life into this unique style of harvesting”, he said. Calling for education about noble rot wines that was not scholarly but awe-inspiring, he pointed out that “we have merchants who struggle to sell a wine that requires more time. The negociants themselves do not seem to be knowledgeable or visit our vineyards enough, particularly during the harvest”. De Lur Saluces believes the focal point of the Sauternes miracle is the search for noble rot, which has to be tracked down. The challenge is to share his aestheticism with a wide audience. 

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