Red Wine Chateau Haut-Bailly


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Chateau Haut-Bailly
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James Suckling 98-99
Robert Parker 95-97
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Technical Info


The head start in spring was maintained throughout the growing season. The harvest took place from September 15th to October 8th in a serene atmosphere thanks to ideal weather. The château's faithful team of experienced pickers included only 4 new members.
Ripeness and quality of the grapes made sorting almost unnecessary in the vineyard as well as in the cellar.
The Merlot grapes came in at 14 Degrees potential alcohol – a sign of good maturity - and most of the Cabernets at 13.5 degrees. A newly planted plot of Petit Verdot produced superb grapes. The harvest was spread over 4 weeks: picking took place on 9 days and 6 half days. The consistency of the quality in every plot is the hallmark of a truly fine vintage.


2015 was the hottest year on record worldwide and ensured peace and serenity to all winegrowers. The two main characteristics of the 2015 vintage are:
1. Ideal weather: sufficient water reserves, a warm spring conducive to good bud break then flowering, and a warm, dry, summer which halted vegetative growth and enhanced ripening.
2. A beautiful, manicured vineyard until late autumn: ripe dark grapes contrasted with the vibrant green of the healthy leafage… an aesthetic appeal promising a tasting pleasure.

Weather conditions

2015 was a year of early phenological maturity despite late budbreak that occurred around April 15th. Replenished over the winter – and the two previous years – the water table enabled the vines to cope with drought conditions. As Emile Peynaud said: "The lesser vintages pave the way for the great ones..." Spring was wonderful and the budbreak, quick and even, was the first factor in the vintage's overall regularity. The weather was warm and dry, with ideal conditions during the crucial phases of flowering, fruit set, and bunch closure. June and July were marked by intense heat and the total absence of rain. Drought set in and caused moderate water stress that called a halt to vegetative growth. This early water stress reminds Denis Dubourdieu of the 2005 vintage. The vines proved their ability to resist.
Providential showers in late July brought on quick veraison (colour change), focused over 15 days only.
Two assets from the start in this vintage: a quick, even flowering in June and an equally quick, even veraison in late July-early August. The vines were splendid and healthy looking from August until the end of the harvest with a magnificent leaf canopy and well-distributed bunches of deeply-coloured grapes. It indicated a great vintage. The weather in August was cooler than usual and helped preserve the aromatic potential of the grapes. Analyses of maturity showed high sugar levels – midway between 2009 and 2010. The grapes were perfectly ripe and healthy. The harvest looked fantastic. 2015 was now promising to be an outstanding vintage. Climatic conditions from spring onward were virtually perfect and the vines were in excellent shape.

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