Château-Haut-Brion Pessac Léognan 2014
|Region||France, Bordeaux, Pessac-Leognan|
Full of ripe fruit, opulent and concentrated, this is a fabulous and impressive wine. It has a beautiful line of acidity balanced with ripe fruits. The wood aging is subtle, just a hint of smokiness and toast. This is one of those wines, from a great white wine vintage, that will age many years. Drink from 2024.
The 2014 Haut Brion is a blend of 50% Merlot, 11% Cabernet Franc and 39% Cabernet Sauvignon picked between 11 September and 10 October, cropped at 42.9 hectoliters per hectare and raised in 70% new oak. As I observed when I made the comparison in barrel, the Haut Brion exudes more red fruit than La Mission Haut Brion, adorned with wild strawberry, bilberry, tobacco and again, just that hint of menthol in the background. The palate is very fresh and taut on the entry. The acidity is very nicely pitched and there is a touch of marmalade and blood orange that is tangible at the back of the mouth. There is real frisson to this Haut Brion, not quite as seductive and as smooth as its sibling over the road, but very persistent in the mouth. I noticed that over 15 to 20 minutes that the Haut Brion just gained more and more complexity, putting a small distance between itself and La Mission, as if determined to mock my opinion in barrel that La Mission would have the upper hand! Be my guest. Haut Brion has an inch, just an inch ahead of its "rival" sibling.
Loaded with warm tar, singed juniper, plum reduction and cassis notes that are perfectly melded, giving this a remarkably supple edge. The finish lets tobacco, bay leaf and incense accents glide in. Shows lovely mouthfeel and superior refinement overall. Best from 2020 through 2035.