2015 Le Clarence de Haut Brion
By Chateau Haut Brion
2015 Le Clarence de Haut Brion from Chateau Haut Brion, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux
In the world of exquisite investment-grade wines, the 2015 Le Clarence de Haut Brion from Chateau Haut Brion stands as a beacon of Bordeaux's exceptionalism. With a vintage that is increasingly being recognised for its generous fruit and structure, it is with great pleasure that I delve into the particularities that set this year's Le Clarence apart.
Embarking on a Sophisticated Bordeaux Journey
Pessac-Leognan, with its gravelly soils, possesses a magical propensity for conjuring wines of depth and complexity. The 2015 vintage was particularly blessed with conditions that led to superb ripening and balance. Le Clarence de Haut Brion, the distinguished second wine of Chateau Haut Brion, expresses these attributes with articulate precision.
The Hallmark of 2015: Elegance and Maturity
Upon decanting, the wine reveals a haunting bouquet of dark cherries and subtle smoky oak, indicative of careful ageing in barriques. The palate, resplendent with rich layers of cassis and earthy undertones, is masterfully structured—firm yet ripe tannins dance amidst an elegant acidity. It is a wine that encapsulates the prowess of Pessac-Leognan terroir with the distinguished savoir-faire of Chateau Haut Brion's winemaking.
The 2015 Le Clarence showcases an enthralling balance seldom achieved so early in its evolution—a testament to the temperate climate and astute viticulture practices of that year. This harmonious interplay makes it an intriguing proposition for investors seeking both enjoyment in the near term and potential for graceful ageing.
Decisions for the Discerning Investor
For aficionados and investors alike, acquiring the 2015 Le Clarence de Haut Brion presents an opportunity to partake in the embodiment of a stellar Bordeaux vintage. Savvy collectors are advised to consider this wine as a cornerstone addition to their portfolios—a wine that not only promises future returns but also provides sensory gratification upon each uncorking.
In fermenting an informed verdict, one must account for the individuality of this striking Pessac-Leognan offering. While remaining faithful to its lineage and terroir, it is the distinctive qualities of 2015 that crown Le Clarence from Chateau Haut Brion a wine of singular merit for consideration amongst judicious collectors and connoisseurs.
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Scores and tasting notes
Racy and refined second wine with polished and pretty tannins. Full body. Pretty.
James Suckling - jamessuckling.com
Less than half of the total production of Haut-Brion went into the second wine, such was the quality of the Grand Vin in 2015. This is rich and well upholstered, with a complex, refined palate, tannins that are almost Italianate in intensity and refreshing acidity. Drink: 2022-32
Tim Atkin - timatkin.com
This is a seriously impressive vintage for this second label of Chateau Haut-Brion. Blended of 57% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc and 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2015 Le Clarence de Haut-Brion displays a medium to deep garnet-purple color and expressive notes of crushed black cherries, blackberries, warm plums, dusty soil and spice cake with touches of dried roses and cigar boxes. Medium to full-bodied with wonderful concentration and depth, it features firm, beautifully rounded tannins and lively acid, finishing long and earthy.
Lisa Perrotti-Brown - The Wine Advocate, 21 February 2018
The 2015 Le Clarence de Haut-Brion is a blend of 57% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc and 42% Cabernet Sauvignon picked between 8 September and 5 October. Compared directly with the La Chapelle Mission Haut-Brion, I find that this does not quite possess the same delineation at the moment. This is broodier and more introspective in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with grippy tannin, layers of dark berry fruit tinged with tobacco and cedar, gaining weight towards the finish that fans out with a sense of conviction. This should turn out to be an authoritative deuxième vin that will probably be consumed in its youth, but clearly possesses the substance to repay ageing. Those with wise heads will afford it 5-6 years in bottle.
Neal Martin - eRobertParker.com, #224, April 2016
57% Merlot, 1% Cabernet Franc, 42% Cabernet Sauvignon. Picked from 8 September to 5 October. Early picking because of stress. Some obvious Cabernet Sauvignon on the nose. Sweetness on the front palate and then marked fine tannins. Not nearly knit. Very inky finish. Not a charmer at the moment! Dried-grape impression on the end. But there's a little more grace than in the Chapelle de La Mission.
Jancis Robinson - jancisrobinson.com