2023 En Primeur | Our 10 favourite white wines (dry and sweet)

Two half bottles of Bordeaux en primeurs white wines sit in an ice bucket
©Domaine de Chevalier

Today, we continue to present our 2023 En Primeur favourites with a focus on white wines.

As you will remember, with our coverage of the En Primeur 2023 weather and wine characteristics, we pointed out that while the quality of the wines was admittedly excellent at times, it was nonetheless varied. That said, 2023 was unanimously recognised as a vintage of fine white wines, both dry and sweet. We covered sweet wines in detail in our article entitled “En Primeur 2023 | Sauternes and Barsac: Vintage analysis and top picks” and Pessac-Léognan wines in our article “En Primeur 2023 | Vintage analysis and top picks from Pessac-Léognan“. Without further ado, here is our shortlist of the best dry white wines of the vintage, which stand out for their freshness and elegance.

Our Pessac-Léognan Top Picks

We like its intense freshness, which can be found in the wine’s aromas (citrus, floral and vegetal notes) as well as the fine acidity on the palate before moving into the long finish.

The same can be said about Chevalier White – it’s all about the freshness! Yellow and white fruit aromas and floral notes mingle with the freshness on the palate which is balanced by an amble, smooth texture and power up until the long finish.

With its delicate and mineral nature, we hail the 2023 from Château Carbonnieux. “The subtle nose slowly delivers citrus fruit, white flower and more mineral aromas. The palate is beautifully taut with a moving, fluid structure, sapidity and lovely bitters.”

This wine is characterised by a fine fluidity and beautiful bitters, flavours of peach and white fruit, candied citrus and white flowers, as well as a beautiful balance brought by its freshness.

Another outstanding achievement of the vintage is Château Olivier, awarded 94–95/100 by James Suckling and 92–93/100 by La Revue du Vin de France. When tasting it during En Primeur week, we noted,  “Aromas of white fruit, white flowers and a touch of minerality rise from the glass. On the palate, the light, fluid texture reveals great tension and beautiful bitters, culminating in a mineral finish.”

And finally, let’s not forget the wonderful energy that emanates from Château Larrivet Haut-Brion: “Aromas of white fruit and peach mingle with floral and mineral notes on the nose. The palate is lively with a fluid body, bitters and sapidity.” Our mouths are already watering!

Our Médoc Top Picks

While they are still relatively rare, white wines do exist in the Médoc! The white produced by Cos d’Estournel is a blend of 70% Sauvignon Blanc and 30% Semillon. This fragrant wine combines floral, citrus and yellow fruit notes. It is beautifully balanced on the palate, with a rich, lively, succulent, saline character and a very persistent finish. Superb.

Our Sauternes Top Picks

While we very much enjoyed sampling the Sauternes wines this year, if we had to pick just one wine from all our tastings, it would be this one! This 100% Semillon really struck a chord with us, offering an intense, complex bouquet combining aromas of roasted pineapple, fresh mushrooms, yellow fruit and citrus fruit. And most importantly, on the palate, the balance of richness and freshness, deliciousness, sapidity and finesse is flawless. The incredibly long finish, revealing flavours of dried apricot and spicy notes will stay in our minds for quite some time.

Château Doisy-Daëne also displays elegance and fine balance. In our En Primeur tasting notes, we praised its nose, which “offers aromas of fresh tropical fruit and hints of honey”. We also particularly enjoyed its smooth character, offering beautiful richness and persistence on the palate.

Take note, you won’t want to miss this rarity! Château Lafaurie Peyraguey chose to keep yields to a minimum (5 hl/ha), to ensure that only the highest quality grapes were used. The result is a wine that is “rich and smooth, sapid with Corinth raisin flavours and plenty of texture”. This wine will most definitely make a powerful and vibrant impression on the most discerning palates.

And to think we’ll have to wait another two years to receive them… Fortunately, time flies! So, grab your basket, and don’t forget your special perks: On top of free EU shipping for all orders in excess of €1,500 (excl. VAT), you’ll also receive a €50 voucher to spend on iDealwine.com. Enough to treat yourself to a bottle of fine Bordeaux white wine ready to enjoy very soon…

See all Bordeaux 2023 En Primeur Wines