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Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc 2010

Bordeaux White Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
  • JS99
  • RP96
  • WS94
0% ABV
  • D100
  • RP98
  • JS97
  • JD96
  • WE95
  • JS99
  • WE96
  • D94
  • RP93
  • WS96
  • RP95
  • JS95
  • RP98
  • JS96
  • WS93
  • JD95
  • WS95
  • RP94
  • RP96
  • WS93
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0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Pale yellow color with lively green highlights. The initial impression on the nose is somewhat reserved, but its tremendous intensity develops with aeration. The wine has a marked mineral character on the palate, with hints of flint and graphite. It is full-bodied and long on the palate, with a firm backbone thanks to good acidity. Its aromatic aftertaste seems to go on forever!

Critical Acclaim

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JS 99
James Suckling
I love the lemon-lime, mineral and lilac character to this young white. It says great Montrachet but it’s dry white Bordeaux. Full and super minerally and racy. Intense and vibrant. Tangy. Like a red wine in structure. Very dense and beautiful.
Range: 98-99
RP 96
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A staggeringly rich blend of 81% Semillon and the rest Sauvignon Blanc, this full-throttle, impressively endowed wine has good acidity, with hints of candle wax, mandarin orange marmalade, caramelized melons and lemon oil. It is a stunner and should last 30-40 more years.
WS 94
Wine Spectator
Sports some serious power, with dried melon and pineapple notes framing a core of Jonagold apple, lemon curd, green plum and heather. Extra tangerine and bitter almond notes flash through the finish, which is nicely toasty and needs some time to stretch out. Displays remarkable density, with a pleasant austerity now that should mellow steadily with age. Best from 2016 through 2025.
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Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion

Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion

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Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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In 1664, Madame de Lestonnac bequeathed the domaine of La Mission Haut-Brion to the Peres Lazaristes, a congregation founded by Saint Vincent de Paul. The "good fathers" worked to restore their property to its rightful worth. After them, the Chiapella family (owners in the 19th century) and Woltner family (owners between 1919 and 1983) never stopped improving the vineyard and modernizing the cellars. Since 1983, the Dillon family, already owner of Chateau Haut-Brion, continues the same policy under the presidency of H.R.H. Prince Robert of Luxembourg.

Pessac-Leognan

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Recognized for its superior reds as well as whites, Pessac-Léognan on the Left Bank claims classified growths for both—making it quite unique in comparison to its neighboring Médoc properties.

Pessac’s Chateau Haut-Brion, the only first growth located outside of the Médoc, is said to have been the first to conceptualize fine red wine in Bordeaux back in the late 1600s. The estate, along with its high-esteemed neighbors, La Mission Haut-Brion, Les Carmes Haut-Brion, Pique-Caillou and Chateau Pape-Clément are today all but enveloped by the city of Bordeaux. The rest of the vineyards of Pessac-Léognan are in clearings of heavily forested area or abutting dense suburbs.

Arid sand and gravel on top of clay and limestone make the area unique and conducive to growing Sémillon and Sauvignon blanc as well as the grapes in the usual Left Bank red recipe: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and miniscule percentages of Petit Verdot and Malbec.

The best reds will show great force and finesse with inky blue and black fruit, mushroom, forest, tobacco, iodine and a smooth and intriguing texture.

Its best whites show complexity, longevity and no lack of exotic twists on citrus, tropical and stone fruit with pronounced floral and spice characteristics.

Bordeaux White Blends

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Sometimes light and crisp, other times rich and creamy, Bordeaux white blends typically consist of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. Often, a small amount of Muscadelle or Sauvignon Gris is included for added intrigue. This blend was popularized in the Bordeaux region of France (where it also comprises outstanding sweet wines like Sauternes and Barsac), but is often mimicked throughout the New World, particularly in California, Washington and Australia.

In the Glass

Sémillon provides the background to this blend, with a relatively full body and an oily texture. Sauvignon Blanc adds acidity and lots of bright fruit flavor, particularly white grapefruit, lime and freshly cut grass. Used in smaller proportions, Muscadelle can contribute fresh floral notes, while Sauvignon Gris is less aromatic but offers ripe, juicy fruit on the palate. These wines run the gamut from unoaked, refreshing, and easy to drink to serious, complex and barrel-aged. The latter style, usually with a higher percentage of Sémillon, can develop aromas of ginger, chamomile and dried orange peel. The dessert wines produced by these blends, often with the help of "noble rot" called botrytis, can have lush stone fruit and honey characteristics.

Perfect Pairings

Crisp, dry Bordeaux white blends are the perfect accompaniment for raw or lightly cooked seafood, especially shellfish. A more structured, Sémillon-based bottling can stand up to richer fish, chicken, or pork dishes in white sauces. These blends also work well with a variety of vegetables and fresh herbs, like asparagus, peas, basil and tarragon. Sweet dessert wines are traditionally enjoyed with strong blue cheeses, foie gras or fruit-based desserts.

Sommelier Secret

Sauternes and Barsac are usually reserved for dessert, but astute sommeliers know that they can be served at any time—before, during or after the meal. Try these sweet wines as an aperitif with jamón ibérico, oysters with a spicy mignonette or during dinner alongside hearty Alsatian sausage, poached lobster in beurre blanc sauce or even fried chicken.

BNP10MISSHB_2010 Item# 143156