Colour: Clear Ruby
Aroma: Gentle and caressing bouquet full of copious dark cherry and raspberry fruit, a touch of saddle leather and a seam of dark chocolate emanating from the oak regime, which needs more time to integrate (though it is not an Haut-Brion that is going to demand years and years in bottle)
Palate: Medium-bodied with fine tannin and feels gentle in the mouth. It is very well balanced, although perhaps the oak comes through too strongly on the finish
Grape Varieties: 46% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot, and 19% Cabernet Franc
Awards: 96pts – James Suckling; 95pts – Wine Spectator; 94pts – Wine Advocate-Parker
History of Château Haut-Brion
Château Haut-Brion is the oldest of Bordeaux’s five first growths, and one of the most famous wines in the world. Located in Pessac-Léognan, south of the city of Bordeaux, the château is rather far removed from its counterparts, all of which are found in the Médoc.The Haut-Brion cuvée tends to have more Merlot than the wines from the Medoc, with Cabernet Sauvignon in more of a supporting role. As such, Haut-Brion is more rounded and softer than other Left Bank wines. The château describes the wine as having an empyreumatic bouquet.
The vineyard is planted to 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot and 18% Cabernet Franc. A stunning white wine is also made, from a part of the vineyard which is 63% Semillon and 37% Sauvignon Blanc. Production is smaller than at the other First Growth Wines, totalling about 20,000 cases, shared between the Grand Vin and a second wine, formerly called Bahans-Haut-Brion but changed in 2007 to Clarence de Haut-Brion in recognition of Clarence Dillon.
Production of Haut Brion Blanc is minute, less than 800 cases in most years. Beginning with the 2009 vintage a new white wine was introduced in the place of Clarence: La Clarté de Haut-Brion, the offspring of Domaine Clarence Dillon’s two prestigious white wines: Château Haut-Brion Blanc and Château La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc.