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La Mission Haut Brion 1989

Subregion France > Bordeaux > Left Bank > Pessac-LĂ©ognan
Grape VarietyCabernet Sauvignon/Merlot/Cabernet Franc

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Tasting Notes

Both La Mission-Haut-Brion and Haut-Brion hit home runs in this vintage, which did not produce as many profound wines as the Bordeaux publicity machine suggested. 1989, the 200th anniversary of the French revolution, was an incredibly hot year (surpassed only by 1990 and 2003). Even from barrel the seamless 1989 La Mission revealed a special elixir aspect, tasting like it had been designed by Chanel. It still possesses a blue/purple color with only a hint of garnet creeping in, and the explosive aromatics offer up notes of licorice, creme de cassis, blueberry liqueur, smoky barbecue meats, truffles and graphite. If that's not enough to get one salivating, the palate has never disappointed either. Full-bodied with extraordinary opulence as well as sweet, well-integrated, velvety tannins, this fresh, lively, blockbuster La Mission appears to be one of those rare wines that never goes through a closed, unfriendly stage. It has been a compelling, multidimensional effort from barrel, in its infancy, and as it heads into late adolescence. A remarkable tour de force in winemaking, it is one of the all-time profound La Mission-Haut-Brions. Anticipated maturity: now-2050.

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (202), August 2012

A famous vintage for Haut-Brion. Full of milky, malty appeal but lacks the freshness of the 1982. Black berries and slightly obvious alcohol. Sweet and rich with very slightly dry tannins on the finish although full and fleshy on the palate. A chocolate mint of a wine.Drink 2005-2030. Date tasted 23rd June 08.

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, June 2008
Farr Vintners, September 2004
Read more tasting notes...
Robert Parker, Hedonists Gazette, July 2008

This is a profound bottle of La Mission Haut Brion with a deep ruby/purple color and a gorgeous nose of espresso, tar, tobacco, mineral, and blackberry, blueberry, and black currant fruit. The extraordinary smorgasbord of aromatics is matched by a full-bodied, viscous, opulent style of wine with sweet, jammy fruit yet enough tannin and acidity to provide uplift and definition. Still somewhat of an adolescent in terms of its development, and far less evolved than its gorgeous sibling, the 1990, this is a prodigious, multidimensional wine that is a modern-day legend. Anticipated maturity 2004-2025.

Robert Parker, Bordeaux Book (4), December 2003
Robert Parker, Bordeaux Book (3), November 1998

I am certainly not going to argue with anyone who belives La Mission Haut Brion's 1989 is every bit as profound as the 1989 Haut Brion. It is a spectacular wine, and as it ages in the bottle, it is quickly becoming one of my all-time favorite La Mission Haut Brion ranking alongside the 1982,1975,1961,1959 and 1955. The 1989 boasts a dense,thick,purple color, followed by a sweet nose of roasted cassis and chocolate scents complemented by whiffs of tobacco, tar, and minerals. The wine is extremely full bodied, unctuously textured,sweet, jammy and rich. Although it is still youthful and unformed, it is already delicious to drink. It should develop additional bottle bouquet by the turn of the century, after which it will drink well for 15-20 years. Last tasted 11/96

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (109), February 1997
Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.