Sauternes, considered to be one of the finest sweet white wines in the world, is produced in an area located on the banks of the Garonne and sheltered from wildly fluctuating temperatures, some forty kilometres southeast of Bordeaux.
The Ciron, a tributary running through the Sauternes appellation, has waters cooler than the Garonne into which it flows, a phenomenon that contributes to morning fog forming in the autumn months.
This mist, combined with the hot sun shining during harvest afternoons, helps promote the growth of noble rot or Botrytis cinerea on the grapes.
The combined effect of the heat and the fungus turns the grapes brown. The skins of the grapes become permeable and water is allowed to evaporate.
The grapes then lose moisture and become more concentrated, resulting in very high levels of sugar and aromatic compounds.
Le Château Tuyttens sous la brume matinale d'octobre