2021 Château Haut-Bailly, Cru Classé, Pessac-Léognan

£576 per 6 bottle case in bond

Today we have seen the release of the 2021 Château Haut-Bailly, which without doubt ranks as one of the finer wines in this decidedly mixed vintage. Their new winemaking facility has surely helped them meet the challenges of the vintage. Interestingly, the harvest at Haut-Bailly was late, with the Merlot harvested from the 27th September and the Cabernet concluding on the 12th October. The decision to wait, which is not without risks, has really paid dividends here.

bottle - web
2021 Château Haut-Bailly, Cru Classé, Pessac Léognan
£576 per 6 bottle case in bond

 93-95 points, Neal Martin, Vinous
The 2021 Haut-Bailly is built around 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, the blend employing less Merlot and more Petit Verdot this year since the latter was not affected by frost. It was picked between September 27 and October 11 and matured in 50% new oak with 10% vin de presse. Allowed to open in the glass, it unfurls to reveal blackberry, briar, touches of crushed stone and cedar. The taut, fresh palate is medium-bodied with sappy black fruit and fine acidity. This is back to the older style of Haut-Bailly in some ways; less opulent, in keeping with the style of the vintage, and delivering good weight on the finish, even if there is not the persistent aftertaste of previous vintages. The great virtue of this Haut-Bailly is the sapidity that marks the conclusion. The kind of Pessac-Léognan that needs to be decanted then poured at the dinner table. Drink 2029-2055

94-95+ points, William Kelley, The Wine Advocate
A classic in the making, the 2021 Haut-Bailly wafts from the glass with aromas of dark berries and wild plums mingled with sweet spices, loamy soil, raw cocoa and violets. Medium to full-bodied, seamless and concentrated, with bright acids, ultra-refined tannins and a long, penetrating finish, it's a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, only 22% Merlot, 10% Petit Verdot and 3% Cabernet Franc. With yields of a mere 19 hectoliters per hectare, it's impressively intensely flavored despite its quintessentially elegant, classically proportioned profile. In many respects, it may represent the Cabernet-driven modern-day alter ego of the superb Merlot-dominant 1998 Haut-Bailly.

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