Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion 2016
1 or more bottles$850.00
Neal Martin100* points
Wine Enthusiast98* points
James Suckling97* points
Jancis Robinson18.5+ points
The 2016 La Mission Haut Brion is a blend of 57.5% Merlot and 42.5% Cabernet Sauvignon.
"It has a clean and precise, quite understated bouquet with fine mineralité, cold stone aromas infusing the black fruit. This has incredible precision, perhaps even more pixelated than the "gaff over the road" Haut-Brion. The palate is medium-bodied with supple and lithe tannin. I appreciate the line of acidity here, the smoothness and harmony that takes your breath away. Every atom is infused with life-affirming freshness. It is a wine bridled with incredible focus and delineation." Neal Martin
Light (Light)Full (Full)
Low Tannin (Low Tannin)Tannic (Tannic)
Sweet (Sweet)Dry (Dry)
Low Acidity (Low Acidity)High Acidity (High Acidity)
- Blue Fruits
- Red Meat
Critic Scores & reviews
"The 2016 La Mission Haut Brion is a blend of 57.5% Merlot and 42.5% Cabernet Sauvignon picked between 19 September and 14 October, one of the longest ever. "We had to be patient and wait for each plot," Jean-Philippe Delmas told me. "It took longer than usual." As is customary, I allowed my sample, and likewise all the wines poured at this tasting, around 40-45 minutes to open since they always transform in the glass. It has a clean and precise, quite understated bouquet with fine mineralité, cold stone aromas infusing the black fruit. This has incredible precision, perhaps even more pixelated than the "gaff over the road" Haut-Brion. The palate is medium-bodied with supple and lithe tannin. I appreciate the line of acidity here, the smoothness and harmony that takes your breath away. Every atom is infused with life-affirming freshness. It is a wine bridled with incredible focus and delineation. I thought that the 2015 La Mission Haut-Brion flirted with perfection. The 2016 has that extra edge, a "je ne sais quoi" that leaves you reaching for the thesaurus looking for superlatives. 98-100 points. Drink Date: 2026 - 2070"
"Wonderful La Mission this year, graceful but with an unmistakable sense of controlled power. The wine just expands outwards and upwards in your mouth - insistent but terribly polite about it. It is deep and silky, shot through with coffee grounds, damson and soft cassis on a creamy mid-palate, utterly beautiful. There is a real energy and vitality here, with a caressing texture to the tannins and huge persistency on the finish. Dense, and yet so finessed that you could almost drink it today. Wow. The blend is 57.5% Merlot and 42.5% Cabernet Sauvignon with a pH of 3.66, harvested between 19th September and 14th October. Drinking Window 2027 - 2050 Tasted by Jane Anson"
"Barrel Sample. This is a seductive, rounded and smooth wine, with fine fruit that cushions the solid tannins. It has spicy tones and ample acidity as well as delicious, concentrated fruitiness. This is going to be a beautiful wine. 96-98 points."
"The texture to this is very beautiful with chewy yet very polished tannins. Full-bodied, tight and mouth-filling. Starts very slowly and then takes off. Love the energy in this. 96-97 points."
Jancis Robinson MW18.5+
"Glowing deep crimson. Very intense and ripe. Snazzy and spicy. Polished and racy. Very firm and lots of ripe tannins – very much à La Mission. Super-sophisticated. Inky and fresh and so ripe and confident. A dry style but great. Racy but tannic. Drink 2027-2050"
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Wine is being produced throughout France and has been done for over 2,500 years with certain Châteaux dating their history back to Roman times, around 6th Century BC. Ranking second in the world in per-capita consumption and first in total production quantity. More so than the overall quantity of wine is the quantity of truly great wines coming out of France makes the nation the envy of wine-making nations worldwide.
Two concepts pivotal to the higher end French wines, in particular, are the idea of 'terroir' and the Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC) system. Terroir refers to the way the geography, geology and climate find their way into the glass, telling a story of the origin of the wine. The AOC was set up in 1935 and has the primary goal of protecting the authenticity of the wines and the livelihoods of the producers. Appellation rules strictly define which varieties of grapes and winemaking practices are approved for classification in each of France's several hundred geographically defined appellations, which can cover entire regions, individual villages or in some cases, like in Burgundy even specific vineyards.
Classic wine regions in France include Champagne (home of Champagne), Burgundy (Pinot Noir and Chardonnay), Bordeaux (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Petit Verdot), Alsace (Aromatic varietals), Loire Valley (Chenin Blanc, Crémant) and the Rhône Valley (Syrah, Grenache Mourvedre)
The Bordeaux classification of 1855 is still in use, as is the Sauternes and Barsac Classification of the same year. Wines from certain regions can be bought En Primeur, which is when the wine is sold prior to it being bottled.
Bordeaux has a rich history of winemaking, dating back to the Roman times. Today, it is known as one of the most significant wine regions in the world, with a reputation for producing complex, full-bodied red wines. The region is home to a diverse range of terroirs, each with its own unique microclimate, soil composition, and grape varieties.
The left bank of Bordeaux is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon, which thrives in the region's gravelly soils. These wines tend to be bold, tannic, and complex, with notes of blackcurrant, cedar, and tobacco. On the right bank, Merlot is king, producing wines that are softer and fruitier, with notes of plum, cherry, and chocolate.
Aside from the red blends, Bordeaux is also renowned for its sweet wines, particularly from the Sauternes and Barsac appellations. These wines are made using a unique process that involves botrytis, or "noble rot," which concentrates the sugars in the grapes, resulting in a lusciously sweet and complex wine.
Bordeaux's classification system has evolved over time, with some estates moving up or down the ranks depending on the quality of their wines. Today, the system includes five growths, with Premier Cru being the highest and Deuxièmes Crus being the second-highest. There is also a separate classification for the sweet wines of Sauternes and Barsac, with Chateau d’Yquem holding the highest rank.
Overall, Bordeaux is a region that continues to captivate wine enthusiasts around the world with its rich history, diverse terroirs, and exceptional wines.
Graves is a large appellation for both white and red wines in Bordeaux, France. It sits south of the city of Bordeaux, bordered by the Garonne River to the east and the Landes forest to the west. It is also Bordeaux’s oldest viticultural zone, with grapegrowing dating back as far as the Middle Ages. The appellation takes its name from the gravelly soils that dominate vineyards here. Graves makes dry white wines from Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. These wines are citrusy, fruity, and floral, with some nutty notes and a hint of minerality, and they can gain both body and refinement with age. For red wines, Cabernet Sauvignon is the primary grape variety, and there are plantings of Merlot, too. These reds boast floral and spicy aromas and rich flavours of blackberry. Premium examples can be impressive expressions, with ageing potential of five to 15 years.
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About the brand Chateau la Mission Haut-Brion
The wines of Château La Mission Haut-Brion owe their success to the singularity of their terroir. The producer harvests the grapes by hand according to their ripeness, then sorts and destalks them. The fruit goes into vats during which the temperature gradually increases to initiate grape fermentation. The château makes both exceptional red and wine wines. The reds are complex, full-bodied, and rich, with the blend adapting according to the vintage. Château La Mission Haut-Brion blanc (formerly, Château Laville Haut-Brion) is a dry white wine for the initiated. It boasts the distinct characteristics of a Graves Sémillon grown on these esteemed terroirs. The 29-hectare vineyard spans land in both Talence and Pessac and sits just a few kilometres southwest of Bordeaux’s city centre. It falls under the Pessac-Léognan appellation, in the northern part of the Graves winegrowing area. The property lies opposite Château Haut-Brion and shares that renowned château’s exceptional gravelly soils. This soil sits on a unique subsoil of clay, sand, limestone, and shelly sand. Most of the vineyard plantings are red grape varieties – Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc – with just more than 4 hectares dedicated to the white varieties Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc.