A blend of 50% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, the medium to deep garnet-purple colored 2015 Haut-Brion is reticent to begin, languidly revealing crushed black cherries, ripe black plums and wild blueberries with sparks of cinnamon stick, cloves, nutmeg, espresso, unsmoked cigars, tapenade, crushed rocks and lavender. The full-bodied palate possesses wonderfully complementary contrasts of bold black and blue fruit richness and delicately nuanced cherry fruit, baking spices and floral accents, strutting ripe, finely pixelated tannins and seamless acidity that is placed firmly in the background, finishing very long and with plenty of attitude. This impeccably poised, exquisitely perfumed 2015 Haut-Brion possesses the most alluring yet seemingly effortless beauty. While it bears only a passing resemblance in its opulent personality to the now legendary 1989, like that vintage the 2015 cannot fail to hedonically satiate and intellectually edify all lovers of great Bordeaux who drink it. What’s more, it also has the blue-blooded tenaciousness to remain this jaw-droppingly impressive, throughout its many guises over time, and for a very, very long time. Feb 2018, www.robertparker.com
The 2015 Haut Brion, a blend of 50% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, was picked between 8 September and 5 October, and is matured in the same level of new oak (78%) and IPT (75) as the La Mission. It has a heavenly bouquet that like the La Mission bestows instant gratification - a veritable kaleidoscope of aromas so crystalline that you can pick them out one by one: dark plum, blackcurrant, Kalamata olive and graphite. It is tempting to just nose this all day. The palate has an indescribably stunning balance and like the La Mission, there is a paradoxical sense of intensity married to weightlessness. Everything here is so precise, so pure and yet as it crescendos towards the finish, it offers a profundity that is unmatched across Bordeaux in this vintage. Having had the pleasure of many great wines from this estate in the past - 1945, 1955, 1959, 1961 and 1989 - the 2015 belongs among that pantheon. Apr 2016, www.eRobertParker.com, Drink: 2030-2075
A huge, dramatic wine, the 2015 Haut-Brion is magnificent. Vertical in its construction and towering in its reach, the 2015 is going to need a good decade-plus to even start becoming approachable, as it needs to lose baby fat and develop the full range of its aromatics. Even at this early stage, though, it is wonderfully complete and positively stunning.
A structured and powerful Haut-Brion with so much finesse and beauty. Complex and long. It’s full and ultra-refined. Super length and polish. A formed and sexy Haut Brion. Mar 2016, www.JamesSuckling.com
The Graves wine of the vintage (along with Haut-Bailly). Taking the highest proposition of first wine (55%) for several years and a good yield of 45hl/ha. The fruit and tannins reached full and perfect ripeness and the structure shows incredible cohesion, easily approaching the quality of the 2010 but with softer tannins. Beautifully complete with great integrity of coffee grounds and rich damson fruit. Opens up in the glass, the personality and complexity ripples through. A touch lower alcohol than La Mission at 14.9%abv and with 3.73pH for fresh balance. 58% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc and 78% new oak. May well be scored upwards when in bottle. Apr 2016, Jane Anson, www.Decanter.com, Drink: 2026-2045
This is an Haut-Brion to stick away in the cellar and forget about for a decade or more. Thick, compact and very concentrated, it doesn’t win many points for elegance and finesse, but will soften and flesh out with age. The flavours - plum, damson and blackberry - are just a little jammy, yet the acidity freshens the finish. Apr 2016, www.timatkin.com, Drink: 2028-2040
50% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 42% Cabernet Sauvignon. Picked 8 September to 5 October. Much more aromatic than La Mission. Lovely silky tannins but masses of them. Very strict and savoury. Really dense but manages to be expressive and convincing. A megalith. 14.9%. Apr 2016, www.JancisRobinson.com, Drink: 2030-2055