1999 La Mission Haut Brion
By Chateau La Mission Haut Brion
1999 La Mission Haut Brion from Chateau La Mission Haut Brion, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux
As we delve into the subtleties of the 1999 La Mission Haut Brion, it becomes palpable that this vintage stands as a testament to the resilience and finesse of Chateau La Mission Haut Brion. The 1999 season in Pessac-Leognan, with its climatic idiosyncrasies, asked poignant questions of the viticulturists and vignerons. They responded with a wine of irrefutable elegance.
A Vintage Signifier of a Legendary Terroir
In the glass, the wine imbues a colour that holds deep garnet hues, hinting at maturity while still shining with an underlying energy. On the nose, it is articulate and expressive; aromas like that of humidor cedar mixed with blackcurrant and a fringe of graphite articulate a narrative that captures one's olfactory sense. Indeed, the variance offered by the 1999 La Mission Haut Brion is a suggestion to wine investors that this vintage encapsulates an investment in history as much as one in flavour.
Finding Equilibrium in Extremes
The 1999 growing season swung between extremes, with an oscillation from wet and cool periods to unsurpassed sunniness. This duality presented challenges but ultimately led to a vintage where concentration met grace head-on. The palate betrays this harmony, featuring dark fruit juxtaposed against an earthy savouriness. It offers tannins that have softened into silk-like threads over years; they are present without pretention, framing the wine without overwhelming its intrinsic virtues.
Pessac-Leognan's mastery in blending varietals shines through this vintage; it possesses enough structure for continued cellaring but equally radiates qualities ensuring immediate pleasure. In terms of wine investment, this particularage represents a pivotal translation of time and terroir: an opportunity for connoisseurs to partake in a robust yet refined page of Bordeaux's storied winemaking chronicle.
To echo the sentiments without repetition, the 1999 La Mission Haut Brion underlines the enduring capability of Chateau La Mission Haut Brion's craft even amidst climatic caprice. A poised choice for savants seeking intellectual complexity coupled with tangible investment potential.
Current market price
Scores and tasting notes
Tasted at the 1999 horizontal at Bordeaux Index. This bottle is showing less bravura than the one at the La Mission vertical last May. It has a relative, light leafy bouquet with dried herbs, a touch of singed leather, some mint developing with aeration that I hitherto have not noticed. The palate is medium-bodied, grainy entry, nice purity on the entry, firm tannins
Neal Martin - Wine Journal Jul 2009
Made in a lighter style, the fully mature 1999 reveals notes of beef blood, roasted herbs, black truffles, damp earth and black currants intermixed with hints of espresso and spice box. This medium-bodied, velvety textured, lush La Mission should hold nicely for a decade in a cold cellar.
Robert Parker Jr - Wine Advocate #128