1985 Haut-Brion, Pessac-Léognan

SKU #950538 96 points John Gilman

 The 1985 Château Haut-Brion is a brilliant wine. Like the ’85 La Mission, this wine is still a bit primary and in need of further bottle age to fully blossom, but all of the constituent components are here and this wine will be legendary in the fullness of time. The gorgeous nose delivers a fine constellation of black cherries, cassis, black truffles, cigar smoke, dark soil tones, a bit of Haut-Brion’s medicinal tones of adolescence, a dollop of fresh herbs and a deft base of new wood. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, pure and impeccably balanced, with a rock solid core, fairly low acids, fine-grained tannins and stunning length and grip on the voluptuous and utterly refined finish. A great, great Haut-Brion. (Drink between 2018-2075)  (10/2014)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Tasted blind at the 1985 Bordeaux horizontal, the 1985 Château Haut Brion is a lovely wine at the peak of its powers. It has an elegant bouquet with sandalwood and dried rose petals that combine effortlessly with vestiges of red berry fruit. I noticed how with time in the glass, it offers a 'side order' of wild girolles! The palate is medium-bodied with a fine seam of acidity, delicate tertiary and leather tones infiltrating the red berry fruit, and while it does not have the audacity of the 1989 or 1990, the finesse on the finish completely wins you over. Simply drink, sit back and savor. (NM)  (7/2016)

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Price: $599.99
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Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
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.
Sub-Region:

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.