Château Haut Batailley lies in the heart of Pauillac. The perfectly situated vineyards have always made good, but never great, wines – until now.
The château's history is intertwined with Château Batailley (classified in 1855). The property was split in two in the 1940s with the vineyards nearest to the Gironde estuary becoming Haut Batailley. The vines are next to those of Lynch Bages, Pichon Lalande, Pichon Baron, Les Forts de Latour and Grand Puy Lacoste.
For the next 75 years, Haut Batailley made good, reliable Pauillac until the property was put up for sale in 2017. There were many keen bidders (rumoured to include first growths) but the owner - Françoise de Brest-Borie - chose the Cazes family of Lynch Bages to take over her precious vineyard. Under the leadership of Jean-Charles Cazes, there has been significant investment in the vineyards and winemaking facilities. 2019 is the breakthrough vintage, the first year where the wine can genuinely challenge its most illustrious neighbours. We are convinced that this is best Haut Batailley we have ever tasted.
At the prestigious Southwold Group blind tasting of the 2019 vintage, Haut Batailley soared up the charts. It out-scored the much more expensive wines of many second growths and some respected tasters gave it the same score as first growths. The outstanding quality of this fabulous claret is without doubt, but what is particularly important is that the price currently remains at £420 per dozen in bond: its opening price in June 2020. This is despite the fact that scores suggest the quality is now equal to that of wines costing two, four and (in one case) nearly eight times the price.
For those looking for outstanding quality classed growth Pauillac that is still available at a modest price, Haut Batailley 2019 ticks all the boxes. It is quite simply the the greatest Haut Batailley ever made.
The 2019 Haut-Batailley has a precise and quite understated bouquet with mineral-rich black fruit, cedar and mint, just a very slight floral note developing with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with graphite infused black fruit, classic in style, very well balanced with wonderful tension. It fans out effortlessly on the finish. Superb. Tasted blind at the Southwold annual tasting. Drink 2026-2055
A blend of 76% Cabernet Sauvignon and 24% Merlot, the 2019 Haut-Batailley is deep garnet-purple colored. It has a pretty, floral nose with hints of lilacs and lavender over a core of warm cassis, blackberry pie, and wild blueberries with suggestions of chocolate cherries and truffles. Medium-bodied, the palate sings of juicy red and black fruits with a lively backbone and plush tannins, finishing long and perfumed.
A fine effort from this cru classé located between Lynch-Bages, Forts de Latour and Pichon Lalande, the 2019 Haut-Batailley offers up aromas of minty berries, loamy soil, violets, cedar and spices, followed by a medium to full-bodied, succulent palate with a pretty core of fruit, lively acids and powdery structuring tannins. This is the second vintage produced by the Cazes family since their acquisition of the château in 2017. - Drink 2025-2050
Tasted blind at Southwold. A blend of 76% Cabernet Sauvignon and 24% Merlot, aged for 14 months in 60% new French oak. Deep purple colour. Deep cassis fruit on the nose, layered with a hint of cedary depth. Pure and youthful. The palate follows, chalky and vertical with great foundations of structure and fine black fruit. This is tightly wound but fine, with great proportions between structure, fruit and acids. This is sleeker than some in this flight but shows superb persistence and impressive length on the finish. Hold for five years and enjoy over several decades.
This is linear and tight with blue fruit and fine tannins. Some graphite and lead pencil, too. Medium to full body with very Pauillac sensibility. Delicate, yet structured. Restrained. Needs time to open. 76% cabernet sauvignon. Try after 2026.