|Subregion||France > Bordeaux > Left Bank > Pessac-Léognan|
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Its big sister, the 2013 La Mission Haut-Brion (65% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon and 3% Cabernet Franc) represents 3,000 cases. This very good to excellent 2013 exhibits a deep plum/ruby color as well as notes of subtle barbecue spice, black currants, incense and wet rocks. With good fruit on the attack, medium body and a short finish, it has the potential to be outstanding if it fleshes out. Drink it over the next 10-15 years.
The 2013 La Mission Haut Brion, a blend of 65% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, has a very pretty bouquet. It is not intense or powerful, as you would anticipate given the growing season, but it unfurls in the glass to reveal wild strawberry, raspberry and dried quince scents, augmented by dried orange peel and bay leaf scents. The palate is medium-bodied with grippy tannin on the entry. This is fresh in the mouth, focused and in the context of the 2013 vintage, quite vivacious, full of energy, especially on the finish. While it might lack the depth, that Merlot lends it the fleshiness that lifts this La Mission Haut Brion above others.
The thing that impresses here is the long finish of subtle currant, chocolate and walnut. Full body, silky tannins and a bright finish. Lingers and satisfies. Hints of oyster shell and walnut. Drink or hold.
A blend of 65% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, picked between 24 September and 11 October, Jean-Philippe Delmas told me that they finished on a Sunday since the risk of botrytis was so high. The pH is 3.58 with 13.25% alcohol. The first sample at the beginning of primeur was not showing well, the second much better with blackberry, bay leaf and a seaweed scents that becomes increasingly intense. Overall the aromatic profile is not powerful but quite elegant, recalling some of the lighter vintages that I have tasted in the past. The palate is medium-bodied with noticeable acidity on the entry. There is a citric freshness here with lively red cherry and dark plum fruit laced with white pepper. It is a linear La Mission, perhaps missing the peacock? tail on the finish but composed and refreshing in the mouth. Not a bad wine by a long stretch, but there are plenty of superior La Mission Haut-Brion wines produced in recent years. Tasted April 2014.
This unfolds on your palate with a oyster, raspberry and stone character. It slowly opens and builds. Chewy yet polished. Reserved LMHB.