The freshness of color, a rather dense purple makes on think of a year both vigorous and full-flavored. In the mouth the structure of the wine reveals itself at once. The ripe tannins are immediately noticeable quickly giving way to sensations of smooth full-flavor. This is a well-balanced wine within a rather rigid framework. The wood is present though not in excess. Progressively the delicate and silky richness emerges but without blotting out the bittersweet trace of the well dissolved tannins.
Bright aromas of blackberries, cherries, currants and toasted oak follow through to a full-bodied palate, with chewy tannins. Long and silky. Racy.
Bright ruby-red. Sexy aromas of black raspberry, smoked meat and warm stones. Dry, classic and deep, but quite closed today, even a bit youthfully austere. Finishes very long, with substantial dusty tannins and brisk acids. Much more backward today than the Haut-Brion, despite possessing a lower indice de polyphenols totaux (65, compared to 70). But both of these wines really call for at least six or seven years of cellaring. Rating: 91+
In 1664, Madame de Lestonnac bequeathed the domaine of La Mission Haut-Brion to the Peres Lazaristes, a congregation founded by Saint Vincent de Paul. The "good fathers" worked to restore their property to its rightful worth. After them, the Chiapella family (owners in the 19th century) and Woltner family (owners between 1919 and 1983) never stopped improving the vineyard and modernizing the cellars. Since 1983, the Dillon family, already owner of Chateau Haut-Brion, continues the same policy under the presidency of H.R.H. Prince Robert of Luxembourg.