Chateau Haut Batailley Chateau Haut Batailley

1998 Chateau Haut-Batailley

By Chateau Haut-Batailley

The 1998 Chateau Haut-Batailley from Chateau Haut-Batailley, Pauillac, Bordeaux

The 1998 vintage in Pauillac is often shadowed by the more celebrated 2000s and mid-90s vintages, yet it possesses its own discreet charm and undoubted merits. The 1998 Chateau Haut-Batailley from Chateau Haut-Batailley emerges as a sleeper hit, offering collectors a glimpse into the subtlety and finesse representative of the estate during an overlooked year.

 

A Vintage Shaped by Nature's Whims

The classic maritime climate of Pauillac faced climatic rollercoaster events in '98, leading to a later harvest that shaped the distinctively mature and mellow characteristics of this wine. The cool ripening period ensured a slow maturing process for the Cabernet Sauvignon-dominated blend, endowing the resulting elixir with sophisticated tannins and a harmoniously integrated structure.

 

Distinctive Attributes of an Understated Year

In the glass, the 1998 Chateau Haut-Batailley exudes aromas introducing spiced plum and cedar-box nuances, alluding to its journey through time. A balanced palate combines blackcurrant with subtle earthy tones, reminiscent of the gravelly soils that cradle the vines of Chateau Haut-Batailley. There's a graceful endurance in its finish – something not necessarily anticipated from this sleeper year but wholeheartedly welcomed by aficionados.

An astute wine investment often looks beyond the luminosity of illustrious years to identify value. In doing so, one discovers bottlings such as this singular vintage – an embodiment of Pauillac's complexity yet representing superb value in a refined package.

 

Conclusion: Taste and Investment Potential Unite

For those dedicated to diversifying their cellars or seeking entry points into storied Bordeaux estates without venturing into wallet-thinning territories, the 1998 Chateau Haut-Batailley stands as an astute choice. Its evolution exhibits the hallmark maturity expected from Chateau Haut-Batailley's storied terroir – a testament to investor-worthy wines that need not always come from vintages bathed in uncontested acclaim.

Market price (CAD)

$1,410.00

12x75cl

Highest score

86

POP score

141.67

Scores and tasting notes

86

A touch of austerity recalls some of the less desirable characteristics of this vintage in the Medoc. The 1998 exhibits firmness along with good, sweet, berry fruit intermixed with mineral, cassis, and spice notes. Medium-bodied and elegant, this effort is best drunk earlier rather than later. Anticipated maturity: 2002-2014.

Robert Parker Jr - The Wine Advocate, 22 April 2001

Vintage performance