2013 La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc, Pessac-Léognan (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1161935 93-96 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 (76% semillon and 24% sauvignon blanc; 46 h/h yield): Bright, pale yellow-gold. Subtly complex aromas of white stone fruits, lime, nut oil, nutmeg, menthol and bitter grapefruit. A huge, deep wine with laser-like acidity lifting the highly concentrated tropical fruit, white peach, spice and herb flavors. As youthfully chewy, thick and palate-staining as this is, it's also wonderfully light on its feet, showing uncommon class. One of the ten best Bordeaux wines of the year.  (6/ 2014)

94-96 points Wine Enthusiast

 Barrel Sample. This is a richly styled white, with great acidity as well as apricot and white peach fruits. The wine is shot through with grapefruit, lemon and a steely mineral texture.  (4/ 2014)

93-96 points Wine Spectator

 Gorgeous white peach, jicama and verbena notes glide along, with a racy edge that gains steam through the very bright, pure finish, which is brisk and energetic, showing serious length and mouthwatering minerality. This has a lovely stony backdrop. Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc.-Tasted non-blind. (Web-2014)

93-95 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 From the property formerly known as Laville Haut-Brion, the 2013 La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc is one of the great dry whites of the vintage. Aromas of tangerine oil, caramelized grapefruit, figs and honeysuckle soar from this medium to full-bodied, rich, concentrated white wine. With terrific acidity as well as a vibrant, medium- to full-bodied mouthfeel and finish, it should provide immense pleasure for at least 2-3 decades.  (8/ 2014)

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By: Alex Pross |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/1/2014  | Send Email
***½ Loads of lemon crème here, lots of layers of fruit-explodes on the palate. Iodine and a structure reminiscent of a fine white burgundy with a price tag to match!

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Sauvignon Blanc

- One of the best known "international" varieties originally cultivated in France and considered the parent of, with Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon. Sauvignon's wonderfully distinctive aromatics generate some of wine's most colorful descriptors, among them "cat pee," herbaceous, grassy, citrusy the world over. In France, the apex of Sauvignon Blanc production is the Loire Valley, in the appellations of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé, where the terroir expresses itself most beautifully through the grape. Sauvignon Blanc is also the leading white grape varietal in Bordeaux, where it is paired with the fatter, richer Sémillon to varying degrees. Relatively easy to cultivate, though more suited to cool climates, Sauvignon Blanc has made inroads in Europe outside of France, especially in Northeastern Italy's Friuli and Alto Adige, but also on the Slovenian border. These lovely wines are often overshadowed by Sauvignon Blanc's achievements in the New World, namely New Zealand, South Africa and California. New Zealand's Sauvignon Blancs, more conspicuously fruity than most French examples, landed the small island nation on the world wine map in the late-1980s and 1990s. South African Sauvignons are one of the most successful international varieties produced in that country and are often quite elegant and affordable. In California, Robert Mondavi managed to, almost single-handedly, created a market for Sauvignon Blanc by renaming his oak-fermented version Fumé Blanc. While some wineries still use the name, California Sauvignon Blanc has secured its place in the California wine pantheon, particularly those from the Napa Valley. Washington State, Chile and Argentina also have considerable plantings of the grape.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

- View our bestselling Bordeaux.
Specific Appellation:

Pessac-Leognan/Graves

- Graves is the large red and white wine region located to the southeast of the city of Bordeaux along the Garonne River. Cabernet Sauvignon dominates the red wines from the area, while the whites are mixtures of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. The most important area within the Graves is the village of Pessac-Leognan. Most of the great chateaux, including Haut Brion, a premier cru and the only wine outside of the Medoc to be included in the 1855 Classification, are located in this small appellation. Graves derives its name from the rocky, stony terrain of the region. Many people believe that the stony soil radiates the day's heat at night and thus makes the grapes ripen earlier than the other regions in Bordeaux.