Haut Brion 1996
Chateau Haut Brion
The backward 1996 Haut-Brion was bottled in July, 1998. Even administrator Jean Delmas was surprised by how closed it was when I tasted it in January. Only 60% of the crop was utilized in the final blend, which was 50% Merlot, 39% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 11% Cabernet Franc. Out of barrel, this wine exhibited far more forthcoming aromatics as well as a sweeter mid-palate than it revealed from bottle. I had expected it to be more forward, and thus slightly down-graded the wine, although I am thrilled to own it and follow what appears to be a slow evolution. It will be a potentially long-lived wine. The 1996 exhibits a deep ruby/purple color, and a surprisingly tight bouquet. With aeration, notes of fresh tobacco, dried herbs, smoke, asphalt, and black fruits emerge ... but reluctantly. It is tannic and medium-bodied, with outstanding purity and a layered, multidimensional style. However, the finish contains abundant tannin, suggesting that this wine needs 5-8 years of cellaring. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2030.
Robert Parker score
* price for one OWC (original wooden case) in perfect condition – 12x75cl per OWC
Last Update October 2015
Chateau Haut Brion
Chateau Haut Brion is a French wine production estate of the highest grade; its premier wine Haut Brion being classified as Premier Cru Classe (First Growth). The winery is situated in Talence, in the North of the wine growing region of Graves. It is the only wine of the five first growths that falls under the Pessac-Leognan appellation.
The wine estate Chateau Haut Brion also produces a second wine labeled Le Clarence de Haut Brion, since the year 2007 as it was formerly known as Bahans Haut Brion. Additionally, this prestigious Chateau also produces a dry white referred to as Haut Brion Blanc, and a further dry white wine labeled Les Plantiers du Haut Brion, relabeled as La Clarte de Haut Brion since the 2008 vintage.
10,000 - 12,000 cases
First Growth – Premier Cru Classe
Graves - Left Bank
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