Long owned by Xavier Borie, this Pauillac estate sits next to Batailley and is just south of Borie’s other famous château, Grand-Puy-Lacoste. The 2012, dramatically better from bottle than barrel, is bigger boned, richer and more flamboyant than this wine normally tends to be. The color is a healthy purple, and the wine offers plenty of cassis and licorice as well as a touch of incense. The oak from barrel-aging 18 months is largely obscured. Medium to full-bodied and impressively endowed, it comes off like a hypothetic blend of a St.-Julien and Pauillac, but this is a classic 2012 that is full, rich and impressive, with beautifully sweet tannins. Drink it over the next 20 years. Drink: 2015-2035.
|Score: 92||Robert Parker, RobertParker.com (218), April 2015|
Elegant but somewhat diluted, this is a pleasant, one-dimensional, superficial Pauillac that can be drunk uncritically. It is not up to the standards of more recent vintages, no doubt because of the challenges of the 2012 vintage.
|Score: 85/87||Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (206), April 2013|
Tasted at a vertical tasting at the château. The 2012 Haut Batailley has a superior bouquet to the 2011, with more complexity and mineralité, crushed stone intermingling with copious black fruit all with exquisite delineation and focus. There is a strictness here, perhaps borrowed from its half-brother, Grand Puy-Lacoste. The palate is medium-bodied with fine definition and focus. There is still some oak to be absorbed but there is plenty of substance on the stylish, sweet finish that is very seductive. This is an excellent wine from François-Xavier Borie, dare I say up there with the 2009 and 2010. It comes highly recommended. Tasted July 2016.
Drink Date 2020 - 2045
|Score: 92||Neal Martin, Wine Advocate (231), June 2017|
Tasted en primeur at the château. The Haut-Batailley 2012 is a blend of 71% Cabernet Sauvignon and 29% Merlot picked between 3rd and 16th October at 38hl/ha. It has an understated bouquet - a graphite seam interwoven through delicate black, slightly earthy fruit. The palate is medium-bodied with a vibrant entry. There is crisp acidity here, a citric freshness that informs the classic, graphite-tinged finish that achieves fine symmetry. This should be approachable, but should likewise mature well over 15-20 years. Tasted April 2013.
|Score: 89/91||Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, May 2013|
A 2012 with currant, wet earth and walnut aromas and flavors. Full body, firm tannins and a savory finish. Give it three to four years to open. Well done. Better in 2018.
|Score: 92||James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, February 2015|
The fruit is very concentrated with black cherry very much dominating. The tannins are firm but feel ripe the mid palate packed with rich black fruits but towards the back it is lighter with lovely spicy bramble.2020-30
|Score: 90/93||Derek Smedley MW, May 2013|
François-Xavier Borie's value-for-money Pauillac expresses the best aspects of the vintage
with considerable aplomb. It's very much a Cabernet Sauvignon-driven red, with leafy
cassis aromas, backed up by serious, grainy tannins, some spice and plenty of freshness
and bite. Elegant and focused.
|Score: 93||Tim Atkin MW, timatkin.com, April 2013|
Somewhat overshadowed by the same owner's Grand Puy Lacoste, this property always produces classic Pauillac at a reasonable price. 71% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot in 60% new oak. There is attractive Cabernet cassis fruit here with a hint of mint, camphor, tobacco and forest floor. Fresh and racy on the palate with well defined blackcurrant fruit, ripe tannins and a hint of spicy oak. Medium-bodied and nicely harmonious. Precise, pure and clean.
|Score: 15.5+||Farr Vintners, March 2013|