CHATEAU LA TOUR HAUT BRION 2004
CHATEAU LA TOUR HAUT BRION 2004. Château La Mission Haut-Brion is an estate in the Pessac-Léognan appellation in the northern Graves, a few miles southwest of Bordeaux’s city center. Its near-neighbor and sister estate Château Haut-Brion was the only estate from the region featured in the 1855 Bordeaux Classification, but La Mission Haut-Brion (rated a Graves Grand Cru in the 1959 rankings) is often judged and priced as the equal of Haut-Brion and the other first growths.
The wine is particularly known for its fruit intensity, rounded, generous texture and silky tannins, and has received multiple 100-point ratings from American critic Robert Parker.
The vineyard shares the same gravelly terrain as Haut-Brion (which sits just over the road), with small quartz stones over a clay-sand subsoil. Around 27 hectares (66 acres) are planted to red grapes, comprising 47 percent Cabernet Sauvignon, 43 percent Merlot and 10 percent Cabernet Franc.
A little more than three hectares (seven acres) are planted to Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc. Like Haut-Brion, its vineyards are now entirely surrounded by the houses of Bordeaux’s southwestern suburbs – a railway line even bisects the property.
La Mission Haut-Brion sees 18-22 months aging in barrel, with 80 percent new oak. Between 6000 and 7000 cases are produced each year. La Chapelle de La Mission Haut-Brion has been the second wine since 2006, when it replaced Château La Tour Haut-Brion.
The estate also produces two Semillon-based white wines: La Mission Haut-Brion Blanc (formerly Laville Haut-Brion) and, since 2009, La Clarté de Haut-Brion. The latter acts as a combined second wine for La Mission Haut-Brion and Haut-Brion Blanc.
The estate takes its name from the Lazarite missionaries who owned it from 1682 until the French Revolution. It has been owned since 1983 by Domaine Clarence Dillon, the owner of Haut-Brion.