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2010 Haut Bailly

2010 Haut Bailly

100 DEC

Featured Review
As ever when tasting the two together, the striking thing is the difference in character rather than quality between 2009 and 2010. This is tighter, more structured in its concentration, more broad shouldered, but still intensely impressive and full of pleasure. Neither are ready to go yet, but this feels like it will last longer, and feels extremely Haut-Bailly in spirit, with an elegant but complex personality, and a grip that doesn't make a big deal of its power but refuses to give up. Blackberry, bilberry, black chocolate and pencil. Harvest September 22 to October 14. Drinking Window 2020 - 2045 Decanter

Decanter | 100 DEC

Critic Reviews

As ever when tasting the two together, the striking thing is the difference in character rather than quality between 2009 and 2010. This is tighter, more structured in its concentration, more broad shouldered, but still intensely impressive and full of pleasure. Neither are ready to go yet, but this feels like it will last longer, and feels extremely Haut-Bailly in spirit, with an elegant but complex personality, and a grip that doesn’t make a big deal of its power but refuses to give up. Blackberry, bilberry, black chocolate and pencil. Harvest September 22 to October 14. Drinking Window 2020 - 2045

Decanter | 100 DEC
Great aromas of crushed blackberries with flowers and stones that follow through to a full body, with super silky tannins and a long, long finish. It fills your mouth with beautiful fruit and velvety tannins yet shows tension and form. This lasts for minutes on the palate. Structured and superb. Don’t touch until 2020.

James Suckling | 98 JS
Deep plum/purple, Haut-Bailly’s 2010 required some coaxing to appreciate its subtle notes of barbecue smoke, lead pencil shavings and creme de cassis as well as its touches of pomegranate and forest floor. The oak is pushed far into the background and the tannins are extremely silky, but the intensity of the wine is profound and the finish lingers for close to 55 seconds. This wine is ripe yet delicate, powerful yet stylish, and essentially resembles a remarkable fashion design from a house of haute couture. This wine needs a good 7-8 years of bottle age and should keep for 40-50+ years.

Robert Parker | 98 RP
The 2010 Haut-Bailly has an outstanding bouquet with intense blackberry, briary, crushed stone and subtle violet scents, more backwards and more precise than the previous vintage. The palate is medium-bodied with grainy tannins and firm grip. Layers of tar and tobacco are infused with black fruit and a touch of liquorice on the finish. This is a Haut-Bailly on another level from previous vintages that will age with style. Superb. Tasted at the Haut-Bailly vertical at the château.

Vinous Media | 96 VM
Chewy and brambly, but integrated, this carries a very hefty core of espresso, ganache, mulled plum and blackberry fruit. The purity starts to shine through on the finish, which drips with cassis and is threaded with a long warm paving stone note. Tight and backward today, this extremely well-built wine will need substantial cellaring. Best from 2018 through 2035.

Wine Spectator | 95 WS
A powerful and complex wine from an estate performing on its top form. Solid tannins, layers of wood and dark fruits combine to give a wine that offers both richness and a dense structure. This Haut-Bailly should age impressively and for many years.

Wine Enthusiast | 95 WE
(Château Haut-Bailly) The 2010 Haut-Bailly weighs in at 13.9 percent alcohol, making it quite ripe, but there is a lot of complexity here to be found on both the nose and palate and this could eventually prove to be one of the best wines of the appellation. The nose offers up a very ripe (but not overripe) blend of cassis, black cherries, tobacco smoke, soil tones and spicy new oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and quite ripe, with a good core of fruit, good focus and plenty of tannins from a combination of new oak and skin tannins. One can sense just a bit of heat from the high alcohol on the backend here at the present time, but this may well simply be a passing phase for this wine and it could ultimately come around quite nicely. (Drink between 2022-2060)

John Gilman | 87-90+ JG

Wine Details for 2010 Haut Bailly

Type of Wine Bordeaux Red : Picture in your mind a combination of cedar, lead pencil, blackcurrant, plum and mineral aromatics, and texture that caresses your palate like a playful lover. The experience is thrilling from the first whiff to the final seconds of a tannic, generous finish - that is what you'll get from a Bordeaux Red
Varietal Red Bordeaux Blend : The inhabitants of the Bordeaux region of France have been cultivating wine-grapes for thousands of years. Ancient Roman ruins litter the vineyards from Saint Emilion to Graves where the art of blending Bordeaux varietals has been practiced and perfected over a very long history. Bordeaux’s climate, terroir and soils, though varied, provide the optimal growing conditions for the red grape varietals planted in the region.

Rarely listed on the labels as “blend,” the red wines of Bordeaux are perhaps the most artfully designed and celebrated in the world. The calculated art of blending the native Bordeaux varietals is impressively accomplished in the most famous winegrowing region in the world. The phrase Bordeaux Blend which seems to have been coined by British wine merchants in the 19th Century relates as much to wines made from the blend as to the grape variety combination itself.

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec and occasionally Carmenere are the lead characters in the creation of Red Bordeaux Blends. Each plays a part in their own fashion and implemented in various combinations and percentages in each appellation within Bordeaux. Red Bordeaux Blends are majorly composed of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, roughly making up 90% of all Bordeaux Blends. Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec (occasionally Carmenere) are also important components and vital to the production of the region’s red wines.

For simplicity, the winegrowing region of Bordeaux can be divided into three main appellations producing Red Bordeaux Blends; the Left Bank (Medoc), Right Bank and Pessac-Leognan (Graves). The Left Bank has a terroir comprised of a wide variety of gravel, stones, sand, limestone and clay soils on a natural terrain of gentle slopes. This sets the stage perfectly for the production of Cabernet Sauvignon, which is the dominant grape of the Left Bank. For example, Chateau Lafite (Paulliac) is composed of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon.

The Right Bank is dominated by clay and limestone with sand and gravel, but the clay in the Right Bank is distinctly its own and adds to the health, growth and vitality of the vines of the varietals grown here. Right Bank wines are typically 80% Merlot-based, which are often denser, richer and mature earlier than those of the Left Bank (with exceptions – Petrus for example). Merlot is a vital component to Pomerol winegrowing and making. Cabernet Franc also plays a major role in the Right Bank, most notably, in Saint Emilion, where the infamous vineyards of Chateau Ausone and Chateau Cheval Blanc are planted to 55% and 52% Cabernet Franc, respectively. Chateaux that produce wines with a majority of Cabernet Franc are considered “old school” producers, but have perfected the use of Cabernet Franc, which was originally used as a blending grape.

Pessac-Leognan (Graves) enjoys a temperate climate, natural hygrometry influenced by the ocean, and has a terroir composed of gravelly soil over a clay subsoil on sloping, hilly terrain. Natural drainage due to the hilly terrain as well as the gravelly soil structure are perfectly attuned to the Cabernet Sauvignon grape vine, which prospers under these conditions. Pessac reaps the benefits of having the terroir of both the Left and Right Bank as it contains gravel and clay. The clay sub-soil allows the growth and success of Merlot, as well as Cabernet Franc. It is home to the only First Growth not in the Medoc. The 50-hectare vineyard of Haut Brion is planted to 45.4% Merlot, 43.9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9.7% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot.

The percentage of Petit Verdot and Malbec may be lesser in quantity, but not in quality. They are vital to the region’s creation of Red Bordeaux Blends. The combination of Bordeaux varietals is legendary in the region, around the world and has influenced winegrowers worldwide to plant and vinify wines which resemble those of Red Bordeaux Blends.

Country France : Wine is the lifeblood that courses through the country of France, pulsing with vigorous pride and determination. Viticulture is not just a hobby or an occupation in France; it is a passion, a cherished tradition that has been passed down through generations of wine stained hands. Winemaking is a beloved art that has been ingrained in the culture, an aptitude instilled in sons by fathers and the hallmark for which France’s reputation was built, allowing it to be renowned as, arguably, the most important wine producing country in the world.



For centuries, France has been producing wines of superior quality and in much greater quantity than any other country in the world. It boasts some of the most impressive wine regions, coveted vineyards and prestigious wines on earth. The regions of Bordeaux, Burgundy, Rhone, Sauternes and Champagne have become the benchmark, for which others aspire to become. Legendary producers such as Chateaux Margaux, Domaine De La Romanee Conti, Chapoutier, d’Yquem and Dom Perignon are idolized world-wide.



France has stamped its name on nearly every style of wine, from the nectar-like sweet Sauternes to hedonistic Chateauneuf Du Papes classic Bordeaux and Burgundy, to its sparkling dominance in Champagne. Many of the most infamous grape varietals in the world, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay originated in France and are not only beloved, but utilized in the creation of some of the greatest wines on earth. French wine production commands the attention of the wine market year after year. With over 860,000 hectares under vine, and numbers close to 50 million hectoliters of wine produced annually, France dominates the market and sets the standard for not only product quality, but also quantity.



France’s many contributions to the world of wine have been absolutely indispensable. The country is the originator of the term “Premier Cru,” coined the term Terroir (a French term so complex there is no literal translation) and has laid the blueprint for a structured appellation system, which others have implemented in their own countries. French vineyard techniques and winemaking practices are mimicked world-wide. California vintners have been replicating Rhone style wines for decades, South America has adopted the French varietal of Malbec and countries around the world are imitating Burgundian styled Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.



With vast diversity in terroir, France is home to some of the most hospitable winegrowing locations on earth. The combination of topography, geology, climate, rainfall and even the amount of sunlight combined with the long historical tradition of winegrowing and making, has allowed the vintners of France to not only hone their skills, but learn from nature to create a product that like the world in which it resides… is very much alive.


Subregion Pessac-Leognan

Overview

Producer Chateau Haut Bailly

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