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Professional Ratings: 98 The Wine Advocate, 97 Wine Spectator, 97 Wine Enthusiast, 97 Wine & Spirits, 94 International Wine Cellar
Region: Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
Varietal: Bordeaux Red Blends
Other Info: Collectible Wines
Style: Big & Bold
Item no. 96216
The color of La Mission Haut-Brion is very dark. One can surmise by its depth that the wine is extremely dense. The nose has great precision. We find there the aromas of red fruit, earth, smoke, and liquorish. With the evidence of this complexity in the mouth one notes the first impression which is the surprising contrast between the concentration of the wine and its smoothness. It possesses an enveloping body, the tannins seeming almost creamy. The wine expands taking a greater dimension on the palate while seeming never ending. The equilibrium of this wine is a great trait of La Mission Haut-Brion 2005 where the intensity of the tannins is counterbalanced by an extraordinary freshness. This is one of the great vintages of Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion.
Another massive effort, the inky/purple-colored 2005 La Mission-Haut-Brion is broodingly backward and foreboding. The aromatic profile offers hints of charcoal, freshly laid hot tar, truffles, graphite and black fruits. Full-bodied, powerful, tannic and almost painfully extracted and concentrated with tremendous structure, good acidity and a massive finish, this infant wine is largely unchanged since I first tasted it from bottle. If everything comes together in 10-15 years, this brilliant 2005 should merit a triple digit score. Anticipated maturity: 2020-2050+.
The Indian spices and blackberry on the nose are so enticing and inspiring, leading to a full-bodied palate, with very polished tannins that caress. Goes on and on as this builds on the palate, with a mineral and berry aftertaste. For long-term aging. Best after 2015. 5,665 cases made.
Dark and dense, but with such opulent fruit, this is a year when La Mission shows its softer, richer side by comparison with neighbor Haut-Brion. There is spice and exotic and generous red fruits to give with the concentration. It has great power, but it also has a velvet structure.
A glorious vintage of La Mission, this young wine buzzes with energy in the mouth. All of the flavors, whether herbal, earthy or vinous, seem to refer back to the tiny pebbles of this terroir. The texture is silken, the finish exclamatory and grand. It has a racy beauty, the kind of effortless strength Nureyev's choreography projects in Le Corsaire. One of the wines of the vintage, this has a high proportion of merlot in the blend (69 percent). It's more accessible than Haut-Brion, but still has the stamina for long-term aging.
Deep ruby-red. Black raspberry and licorice on the nose. Dense and sweet but youthfully tight; a serious young wine with terrific verve and the acid/tannin backbone to support a long and glorious evolution in bottle. Very long on the back end, with mouth-saturating fruit and tannins. Like La Chapelle-and in direct contrast to Bahans and Haut-Brion-this is quite backward today, and almost certain to merit a higher rating in the future.