Haut-Brion Blanc is as renowned as it is scarce, with only about 8,000 bottles available per vintage for a very demanding market. It is often regarded as the greatest white of Bordeaux, although Haut-Brion Blanc’s sibling, Laville Haut-Brion, sometimes equals and occasionally surpasses it. The white vineyards at Haut-Brion are planted to 63 percent Sémillon and 37 percent Sauvignon Blanc, a weighting that gives this wine its particularly plush combination of Sémillon-driven body and Sauvignon-influenced scent of musk. Haut-Brion Blanc ages beautifully.
White Bordeaux does not come much more layered and powerful than this. Strong oak roasted nut notes are evident on the nose but dissipate quickly on the palate. Taut yet shapely refreshing but rich. A large framed wine that manages to find harmony. Alongside exotic touches of stone fruit there are some wonderfully energising fruit characteristics of crystallised lemon rind, grapefruit and lime. Long, complex and very intense without being too weighty.
1962 Château Haut-Brion Blanc (Graves)
Haut-Brion Blanc is for me the white wine of the vintage. I have had opportunity to taste it several times, and it has never let me down. It has always been a real charmer – elegant and classic.
This one has a good lower-neck level and was decanted one and half hours. It has a superb, fresh nose of honeyed fruits and toasty oak. Massive rich and intense wine with excellent complexity and balance. While it does not possess the weight and body of blockbuster vintages such as the 1945 and 1959, it was very “big” in its own charming, feminine way. Velvety and elegant with a texture more like old grand cru Montrachet than a severe white dry Graves. Got better and better in the glass. Very exiting wine with everlasting finish.