Château Haut-Bailly has produced beautiful wine in 2015. This historic property with enviable terroir close to Léognan has been on song for a number of years. Considerable investments by the owners across almost two decades are resulting in wines that are now regularly amongst the very best Bordeaux offers. Haut-Bailly’s 2015 blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, and, for the first time, a smidgen [4%] of Petit-Verdot, is top-drawer. It has tremendous concentration and depth but also approachability this year which contrasts with the wines usually brooding infancy. Recent acquisition Château La Pape is pretty and perfumed and has attractive texture. Both wines, Haut-Bailly especially, speak to the excitement that surrounds the 2015 vintage here in Pessac-Léognan.
Posts Tagged ‘Château Le Pape’
2014 is a good to very good vintage for the red wines of Pessac-Léognan. The best have very attractive aromatic profiles, plenty of depth and texture to the fruit, and attractive freshness and acidity. There is a general sense that the wines need to round out and fill in further during elévage, but many show real promise. A few of the lesser properties lack concentration and in a few cases tannins were a little tough. Haut-Brion, followed by Haut-Bailly, Smith Haut Lafitte, La Mission Haut-Brion, Domaine de Chevalier and Pape Clément, have all produced very impressive wines. Behind these Olivier [especially] along with Bouscaut, Carbonnieux, de Fieuzal, and Latour-Martillac have produced reds of note. Again these wines are often priced competitively compared to wines of a similar quality in the Haut-Médoc appellations such as Pauillac and St Julien. Many, though by no means all, have been released at prices below that of comparable vintages [2008 for example] which makes them worth considering this year.
Château Haut-Bailly occupies a terrific position across a verdant hilltop looking back toward Léognan. It is a beautiful spot, almost completely rural and yet little more than ten minutes drive from the outskirts of Bordeaux. Clearly the property is in excellent shape and the vineyards beautifully manicured. There is also a reassuring air of modesty about the place. This authenticity comes across in the wines, which are very good here in 2014. Haut-Bailly has aromatic purity, genuine substance and definition. All the elements are held in proportion. Alongside the ripeness lent by the Indian summer is 2014’s attractive freshness, the memory of cool months of July and August. It adds energy and vigour to the wine. I also had the opportunity to taste the 2005 Haut-Bailly on my visit in April. This is just hitting its stride. Strong and deep, the wine shows considerable complexity. It will doubtless improve over the next decade and easily keep for another after that.