Chateau Haut Brion   Haut Brion

1997 Haut Brion

By Chateau Haut Brion

1997 Haut Brion from Chateau Haut Brion, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux

Embarking upon a review of the 1997 Haut Brion from Chateau Haut Brion, one must delve into the climatic narrative of the '97 vintage. Pessac-Leognan's enigmatic soil was challenged by an unusual growing season that year; a triumph for vintners who wrestled with nature to create wines with astonishing complexity.


The Vintage Paradox

The 1997 season in Bordeaux was, by no means, straightforward, with conditions thwarting the rulebook at will. Yet, within these trials lay the kernel for unique expression in its wines. The 1997 Haut Brion stands as a testament to this anomaly. Its poised evolution reveals restrained power and an intriguing interplay of flavours that have emerged over time.


A Tasting Odyssey of the 1997 Vintage

A snapshot of this red reveals a panorama of olfactory tales; each sniff recounts a different chapter from the book of 1997. With an open bouquet, waves of smoke and earth brands provide an atmospheric prelude to dark fruits hesitantly emerging on the palate. The mid-palate uncurls graciously, offering verses of leather, cigar box and the indelible signature mineral finish unique to its terroir.

The integration of tannins has been conducted with deft artistry, allowing subtle acidity to carry forth the longevity of this wine. It is now reaching a stage where each taste invites reflection on its storied journey from vine to glass.


An Investment Vintage Bespoke with Character

In the context of wine investment, astuteness lies in discerning the narratives behind each bottle. The 1997 Haut Brion presents itself as one such intriguing acquisition; a collectors' exemplar steeped in history and singularity.

It stands apart as one of the more intellectually challenging vintages—undeniably mature yet marked by a stoicism that whispers it could grace cellars for years hence. For investors seeking differentiation in their portfolio, one might argue that select bottles such as this fit snugly into a stratagem where rarity and storytale peaks reign supreme.

In essence, grasping the story that is the 1997 vintage at Chateau Haut Brion is akin to unlocking a unique chapter in Bordeaux's vast vinous archive—an undertaking that both connoisseurs and investors approach with anticipated pleasure.

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Highest score


POP score


Scores and tasting notes


A deep garnet core. The nose is lifted and vigorous, even compared to the other First Growth '97s with hints of mint, liquorices and black olives. Very attractive bouquet. The palate is full-bodied with a wonderful sense of balance, that tell-tale earthiness in the middle but very good structure and vigour. Hints of portabello mushroom, black truffle and bell pepper on the finish, with just a touch of greenness that merely complements the wine as a whole. Good length. A very fine '97 on par with Lafite. Drink now-2020. Tasted September 2006.

Neal Martin - Wine Journal Jul 2008


This light to middle-weight Haut-Brion exhibits an evolved, sweet red and black currant nose with notions of scorched earth, minerals, and tobacco. Although not big, it exhibits fine ripeness, harmony, and elegance, velvety tannin, and sweet fruit presented in a charming, open-knit, evolved format. The wine may develop even more complexity, meriting a higher score. Anticipated maturity: 2001-2014.

Robert Parker Jr - The Wine Advocate, 20 April 2000

Vintage performance