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Premier Grand Cru Classé of 1855
Producer: Château Haut-Brion
A classic French legend
When he purchased Château Haut-Brion in 1935, Clarence Dillon restored it to its former glory and to the elite circle of the most legendary wines in the world. This extraordinary, bold, courageous vision is now continued by the fourth generation of the family, represented by Prince Robert of Luxembourg, Chairman since 2008.
Located in the town of Pessac, just a few kilometres from Bordeaux, Château Haut-Brion – the first of the three estates acquired by the Dillon family – is the oldest winegrowing property in the region.
Vegetative growth started on the 13th of March, then was accelerated by a warm, sunny spring. Two incidents of frost in late April served as a reminder to winegrowers that viticulture is fragile and that nature cannot be tamed.
The water deficit, which reached 50% in July and August, was a distinguishing feature of the vintage. However, thanks to significant rainfall in June, the vines were spared from the drought. Above-average sunshine and a spell of very hot weather (29 days over 30°C), moderated by relatively cool nights (enabling the grapes to ripen without stress) also resulted in favourable winegrowing conditions.
The outstanding fruit is reflected in our wines, which have managed to preserve the freshness vital to the balance we always seek. Weather during the month of September was fine for picking – with the exception of the second week, when it rained, which helped the Cabernets to ripen slowly and well.
2017 has all the necessary qualities to become a benchmark vintage.
Beautiful deep red with purple highlights. The initial impression on the nose is of a very elegant wine made with perfectly mature grapes. Swirling in the glass reveals complex aromas featuring ripe fruit, spices, and liquorice. Already emblematic of “Haut-Brion”. Starts out broad-based, tight-knit, and subtle on the palate, with no hardness whatsoever. The wine then goes on to develop delicious flavours, with rich tannin evolving into a wonderfully long aftertaste.
Although temperamental at times, Mother Nature ended up being incredibly generous in 2017.
Robert Parker Rating: 97
Grape Variety: Merlot: 53%, Cabernet Franc: 6.3%, Cabernet Sauvignon: 40.7%
Alcohol percentage: 14.5%