The 2005 Haut-Brion is a deep, meaty wine. Black cherry, game, smoke, tobacco, licorice, gravel and scorched earth saturate every corner of the palate. The 2005 is inky, creamy and voluptuous right out of the gate. It is also very young and in need of time in bottle. Most wines I tasted for this report started to lose a little steam after 24 hours, but the Haut-Brion kept getting better and better. It’s a magical wine, if a bit less accessible than most other 2005s at this stage. Tasted two times.
Anticipated maturity: 2025-2055
56% Merlot, 39% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5% Cabernet Franc. Seen by some as similar to the legendary 1949, a very dry winter was followed by a wet April, before dry weather set in for the rest of the growing season. Quite different to the other first growths, with exotic notes combined with dark and red fruit, along with distinctly earthy, meaty characters. Plenty of opulence here, with a spice-laden palate, fine acidity and a hint of iodine on the finish. Nicely mature and in good balance, this still has a long way to go. (AWH)
Anticipated maturity: 2022-2040