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
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
Robert Parker 100
The mineral-laced 2005 Haut Brion (56% Cabernet Sauvignon, 39% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc) is exquisite. With its elegance and finesse, it is not as powerful as La Mission, but the nobility and complexity of the aromatics, incredible fragrance (subtle smoke and blue, red, and black fruits) that persists in the glass, full-bodied mouthfeel (though very light and delicate on its feet), and incredible length characterize this great Haut-Brion. It is just starting to drink well, and should continue to do so for at least another three decades. It is a tour de force in winemaking, but only 9,000 cases were produced.
Anticipated maturity: 2015-2045