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Haut Brion 2005 (3.0L)

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Critic Scores, Reviews & Descriptions

100 WS / 100 WA / 100 JS / 100 VM / 100 JD / 100 JA / 100 WI / 98 WE / 18 JR

This is incredible on the nose, showing coffee cake, blackberry, floral, coffee bean and vanilla bean, with Chinese spices. A very complex, full-bodied red, with seamless, hyperpolished tannins that caress every millimeter of the palate. Lasts for minutes. So beautifully balanced, I'm left speechless. Is it even better than the 1989? Best after 2017. 9,080 cases made. - Wine Spectator

The mineral-laced 2005 Haut Brion (56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc) is exquisite. With its elegance and finesse, it is not as powerful as La Mission, but the nobility and complexity of the aromatics, incredible fragrance (subtle smoke and blue, red, and black fruits) that persists in the glass, full-bodied mouthfeel (though very light and delicate on its feet), and incredible length characterize this great Haut-Brion. It is just starting to drink well, and should continue to do so for at least another three decades. It is a tour de force in winemaking, but only 9,000 cases were produced. Robert Parker, Wine Advocate

This is a wine that makes you dream. The nose is packed with flowers, sweet tobacco, iodine, spices, raspberries, blackberries, and great freshness. The texture is perfection, pure silk and the fruit is wonderfully complex and subtle. Currants, fresh mushrooms, flowers, and stones fill the mouth and make way to a delightful finish. Please leave this alone until 2020. - James Suckling

One of my wines of the night, the 2005 Haut-Brion is stratospheric. Remarkably vivid and nuanced, the 2005 presents a compelling mélange of dark flavors laced with the savory/mineral notes that are so typical of Haut-Brion. The 2005 is a thrill to follow in the glass, as it continually reveals new shades of its personality, something I consider a common attribute among all of the world's truly great wines. The dense, explosive finish points to a very bright future. Readers who own the 2005 should be thrilled, as it is truly magnificent. - Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media

The 2005 Haut Brion is out of this world and certainly one of the finest wines I’ve ever tasted. Deeper, richer, and more concentrated than the 2000, it offers as pure an expression of this terroir as I could image with huge notes of blackcurrants, roasted herbs, scorched earth, tobacco, and earth all literally soaring from the glass. Full-bodied, powerful, concentrated, and layered, it still holds onto the hallmark elegance and purity of the estate. Wine doesn’t get any better and this tour de force can be drunk anytime over the coming three decades or more. - Jeb Dunnuck

The stand out First Growth in my recent retasting of the 2005s, and again here it blew us all away. This was a drought year, with almost no rain from May to October, but never excessively hot, and the balance is evident. The slightly dry tannins that affected many 2005s when young were never such a problem on the warm soils at Haut-Brion, and this is generous, exceptionally nuanced and flavourful, with vivid black cherry and cassis fruits, riven through with liqourice, cocoa bean, pomegranate, sage, cocoa bean and luscious acidities. Jean-Phillip Delmas winemaker, two years into his tenure at the time after taking over from his father Jean-Bernard Delmas in 2003. 100% new oak. - Jane Anson, Inside Bordeaux

The 2005 Haut-Brion is a blend of 56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot, and 5% Cabernet Franc. Deep garnet-brick in color, the nose explodes with heart-thumping floral and fragrant earth notes over a core of Morello cherries, black raspberries, and creme de cassis. It is medium to full-bodied, with super-firm, ripe tannins and a lively backbone lending a rock-solid structure to the bright, muscular fruit. The palate absolutely shimmers with stunning mineral and floral notes, finishing with epic length. Tantalizingly good now, expect even greater things with 5-10 more years of bottle age. It will cellar to 2070 and, most likely, well beyond. Bought by an American banker / financier Clarence Dillon in 1935, it remains in the family today, with Prince Robert of Luxembourg now managing the 125-acre estate on the edge of Bordeaux city, in the town of Pessac. The soils include some very deep gravels and a good amount of clay. Clonal variation adds to the complexity of the site, with over 500 different clones. Jean-Phillip Delmas is the third generation in his family to oversee winemaking at this estate. The style is often more elegant, minerally, and refined than its flamboyant sibling La Mission Haut-Brion. Indeed, Haut-Brion can appear austere in its youth.-Lisa Perrotti-Brown, Wine Independent

A big, virile wine, dominated by dark and firm tannins. The structure comes from powerful black fruits, the wood only showing as dry edge to the tannins. It's firm, obviously destined for long aging, with initial blackberry fruits powering through the density. A stupendous wine that will last many decades. -Roger Voss, Wine Enthusiast
Quite different to the other first growths, with exotic notes combined with dark and red fruit, along with distinctly earthy, meaty characters. Plenty of opulence here, with a spice-laden palate, fine acidity and a hint of iodine on the finish. Nicely mature and in good balance, this still has a long way to go. (AWH) - Jancis Robinson



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