Chateau Haut Brion   Bahans Haut Brion

2003 Bahans Haut Brion

By Chateau Haut Brion

2003 Bahans Haut Brion from Chateau Haut Brion, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux

In my four-decade romance with fine vintages, the 2003 Bahans Haut Brion commands a distinct chapter in the annals of Bordeaux's wine heritage. Issued from the cellars of the illustrious Chateau Haut Brion, whose lineage traverses centuries, the 2003 vintage arose from a season marked by remarkable climatic extremes—characterised by scorching summer heat which few vineyards have endured.


Resilience and Refinement: A Bordeaux Investment Piece

The resilience of the Chateau Haut Brion vineyard is elegantly captured in this vintage, presenting a narrative of struggle and triumph through its blend. Beyond its historic footprint, the 2003 Bahans Haut Brion serves as an intelligent acquisition for those seeking to diversify their portfolios with a wine of both stature and curiosity.


A Rare Harmony Amidst a Heatwave

Contrary to expectations, this celebrated second wine did not succumb to the hazards of overripening—a testament to the winemaking acumen at Chateau Haut Brion. The wine delivers a regal tapestry of flavours that are harmoniously balanced. The tannins remain robust yet refined, bearing the stamp of excellence that Chateau Haut Brion is known for, but with an unexpected suppleness induced by that brutish summer.

On the palate, one finds a choreographed ballet of dark fruits, hints of tobacco and earthy undertones that resonate with depth and sophistication. The finish is generous yet punctuated by a freshness that belies the vintage's challenging weather conditions. This 2003 Bahans Haut Brion vintage stands as a pivotal point for investors and collectors alike; it authentically captures the essence of its terroir under adversity.

Culminating in a review built upon years of experience, I find the 2003 Bahans Haut Brion to be one of those rare offerings that articulate the story of their year with eloquent flavour and a masterful structure. It is indeed one to secure for any serious Bordeaux collection.

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Scores and tasting notes


The second wine, the 2003 Bahans Haut-Brion (before the name change to Le Clarence) shows complex unsmoked cigar tobacco notes intermixed with burning embers, charcoal, black currant and cherries in a medium-bodied, fleshy, complex and stunning display of fruit, body and richness. The tannins are resolved, the acidity low and the wine gorgeous now. It should continue to drink well for another 5-6 years. There is no reason to defer your gratification with this beauty. These are two great successes in this vintage that have aged well and surprised me by their intensity and overall complexity.

Robert Parker Jr - The Wine Advocate, 27 August 2014


Markedly open and ripe, the 2003 Bahans Haut-Brion offers up notes of plums, figs, and black currants in a chewy, fleshy style that begs for consumption over the next 7-8 years.

Robert Parker Jr - Wine Advocate #164


Tasted blind at Farr Vintner's Left Bank tasting. The Bahans '03 has a rounded, plump, damson and plum-scented nose with rather cumbersome oak. The palate has a plump, soft entry with black cherries and cassis, lacking a little backbone but expressive towards the fleshy finish. Tasted October 2010.

Neal Martin - Wine Journal Mar 2011

Vintage performance