2008 La Mission Haut Brion
By Chateau La Mission Haut Brion
2008 La Mission Haut Brion from Chateau La Mission Haut Brion, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux
In the world of fine clarets, few wines capture the essence of a vintage as exquisitely as the 2008 La Mission Haut Brion from Chateau La Mission Haut Brion. This vintage from the storied soils of Pessac-Leognan is a testament to the resilience and adept management of a challenging growing season that culminated in wines of elegance and grace.
Defying Expectations: The Testament of Terroir
As investors and connoisseurs ponder the nuanced interplay between terroir and climate, 2008 mirrors a triumph against adversity. After an arduous start with cool, wet conditions, Bordeaux was granted reprieve by a glorious late-summer and autumn, allowing grapes to reach optimal maturity. It is this dance with nature that infuses the 2008 La Mission Haut Brion with a unique finesse - a reflection of its poised handling during capricious weather.
Elegance in Evolution: A Vintage's Journey
The tasting reveals how magnificently the 2008 vintage has evolved. On approach, one encounters an alluring bouquet of ripe blackcurrant and plum, laced with subtle hints of tobacco and earth - hallmarks of La Mission Haut Brion's esteemed lineage. The palate is blessed with a harmonious blend of precision and depth; tannins are well-integrated and convey a silk-like texture, foretelling of the wine’s longevity.
Structurally speaking, it shows remarkable balance, benefiting from the cooler year to preserve acidity that lifts its dark fruit core. Layers unfold revealing complexity with every sip—an attribute which astute collectors prize for both enjoyment and investment.
In Conclusion: The Symphonic Splendour of 2008
For those seeking out distinctive vintages to enrich their portfolios, the 2008 La Mission Haut Brion represents an astute engagement with time and place. It is a bottle where resilience translates into restrained opulence—a symphonic splendour that both captivates the senses and promises further reward with careful cellaring.
Current market price
Scores and tasting notes
Tasted ex-chateau and single blind in Southwold. Two bottles tasted and I was initially parsimonious with my score since it seems to have closed down. Allowing the wine to continually aerate, it finally agrees to reveal what is impressive ripeness “under the bonnet”, with blackberry, scorched earth, graphite and even a touch of honey. But it is just glimpses of what will evolve with time. The palate is medium-bodied with filigree tannins, a little edgy and tense, vivacious with a very crisp, focused finish with beautifully integrated oak. Once the aromatics awaken, this will be superb. Tasted January 2012.
Neal Martin - Wine Journal May 2012
Like a lot of wines in this underrated vintage, the 2008 La Mission was one of the great bargains of recent vintages. Its healthy blue/purple color is followed by aromas of blueberries, black raspberries, licorice, truffles, underbrush and forest floor. The scorched earthy/smoky character of this estate's terroir has not yet emerged. Medium to full-bodied and concentrated with good acidity, freshness and delineation, this is a big wine for the vintage, but also very classic in its balance of tannin, acidity and extract. It will benefit from another 5-7 years of cellaring and should keep for three decades. The final blend was 51% Cabernet Sauvignon, 43% Merlot and 6% Cabernet Franc.
Robert Parker Jr - Wine Advocate #194
Fascinating aromas of crushed berry, plums, sweet tobacco and stones. Full bodied, with chewy and velvety tannins and a long, long finish. This is very structured and rich with a bright and tangy acidity. Needs time to come together, obviously. Try after 2015.
James Suckling - jamessuckling.com, December 20th 2010