Average critic rating : 80.0 points
I enjoyed this wine in its first 20-25 years of life, but it has always been a rustic-styled La Mission, and as it has aged (this was the first bottle I have had in many a year), the volatile acidity and aggressiveness of the tannins are apparent as well as off-putting. A distinctive aroma of volatile acidity along with ashtray, smoke, camphor, faded fruit and damp earth notes emerge from the glass of this garnet/amber/orange-colored, medium-bodied wine that is clearly near the end of its life. Given the tart acids, it will probably hold together for another decade, but the rustic exuberance it revealed in its youth is long gone. Nevertheless, some interesting things are still going on, especially in the aromatics, and if you don’t mind some rather dramatic volatile acidity you may rate it higher than I. Wine Advocate.August, 2012
Just south of the city centre of Bordeaux opposite sister property Ch. Haut-Brion lies Château La Mission Haut-Brion. La Mission Haut-Brion is one of the greatest wines of Bordeaux and, whilst not classified as a first growth like neighbour Haut-Brion, is considered to be the superior of the two in some vintages. The estate has produced no less than six vintages awarded 100 points by Robert Parker: the 2009, 2000, 1989, 1982, 1959 and 1955.
As with most Graves estates, a considerable proportion of Merlot is incorporated into the red wine (45%) with the balance of the vineyard planted to Cabernet Sauvignon (48%) and Cabernet Franc (7%). A white wine, one of the finest white wines of Bordeaux, is also made: La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc is made up of 85% Semillon, 14% Savignon Blanc and a dash of Muscadelle. As with much of the Haut-Brion stable, the nomenclature of the wines can be a little confusing: La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc was known as Laville-Haut-Brion prior to 2009. A second white wine, La Clarté de Haut-Brion, has been made since 2009; this is essentially the second wine of both Haut-Brion Blanc and La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc. This wine was previously labelled as Les Plantiers du Haut-Brion.
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