2010 La Mission Haut-Brion Rouge, Pessac-Léognan (1.5L) (Pre-Arrival)

SKU #1067011 100 points James Suckling

 This is crazy. The nose is so unique with the iodine, stones and currant aromas with wet earth and mushroom. Aromas like this don't usually come out until 10 years or so in the bottle. Classic nose for this estate. Full-bodied, with an amazing palate of firm yet polished tannins and a solid palate. So dense and gorgeous. It is really stunning. Try in 2020.  (2/ 2013)

98 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 A strong candidate for a perfect score in about 15 years, the 2010 La Mission Haut-Brion could well turn out to be a modern-day version of their 1955. Sadly (or maybe fortunately) for me, I’m not old enough to have tasted the 1955 in 1958 from bottle, but this wine could also be an update on the more modern 2000 which, of course, I know well and actually own. This full-bodied, colossal giant of a wine is one of the goliaths of the vintage. It may well have the highest level of natural alcohol for any wine from the Left Bank of Bordeaux (15.1%) and has the definite potential to be a 50- to 75-year wine. Dense purple, it offers up notes of lead pencil shavings, charcoal embers, blueberry and blackberry liqueur along with massive concentration, a multi-dimensional mouthfeel and a monumental finish that goes well past a minute, which I think might be a record for a young Bordeaux. Keep in mind that the 2009, which I gave three digits, came in at 14.7%, but the pH of the 2010 is lower, giving the wine a freshness and precision that is remarkable. The final blend was 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, and – unlike the Chapelle de la Mission, which has 26% Cabernet Franc – there’s only 1% Cabernet Franc in the 2010 La Mission Haut-Brion. This is a wine for those of you with youth on your side as well as patience. It will need a good decade of cellaring. An amazing wine. Anticipated maturity: 2024-2075+.  (2/ 2013)

94-97 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 (62% cabernet sauvignon, 37% merlot and 1% cabernet franc; 15.1% alcohol) Deep ruby-purple. D eep, refined aromas of blackcurrant, cedar, minerals and wet stone on the reticent, cabernet sauvignon-dominated nose. Then very dense and powerful on the palate, with pristine blackberry, mineral and forest floor flavors and a supple touch that Haut-Brion doesn't yet show. The tannins are amazingly fine and polished, indeed among the noblest of the year, but this otherwise great wine lacks the sheer massive concentration of Haut-Brion. At 10,000 vines per hectare, La Mission almost always has 0.2% or 0.3% more alcohol than Haut-Brion, according to Jean-Philippe Delmas. But the exact measure of La Mission's success in 2010 is that its 15.1% alcohol is not at all obvious.  (6/ 2011)

97 points Wine Enthusiast

 *Cellar Selection* A beautifully dense, ripe wine, its intense acidity balanced by an opulent structure and gorgeous fruits. The texture is smooth and velvety, while never losing sight of the powerful structure. This elegant and powerful wine will age for many years.  (3/ 3013)

97 points Wine Spectator

 Intense and engaging. Despite showing lots of heft and tarry grip, the singed apple wood and alder notes are well-defined in this red, accentuating a core of roasted fig, blackberry coulis and macerated red and black currant fruit. The long, bramble-edged finish sports showy ganache and Lapsang souchong tea notes, while the structure refuses to yield until everything has finally played out. Muscular and vivacious. Best from 2019 through 2040.  (3/ 2013)

K&L Notes

**+ 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 37% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc.

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By: Clyde Beffa Jr. |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 9/12/2012  | Send Email
Very open and forward. Delicious.

By: Trey Beffa |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/13/2011  | Send Email
A big wine with lots of dense fruit and a long, rich and mineral-driven finish.

By: Steve Greer |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/13/2011  | Send Email
Floral, with concentrated spice and black-red fruits.

By: Ralph Sands |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/13/2011  | Send Email
Deep, but bright. Naturally a powerful wine that will last a long time.

By: Alex Pross |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 5/13/2011  | Send Email
Elegant, sexy and suave, with mashed raspberry fruit and milk chocolate nuances.

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Additional Information:

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. 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.