1982 Haut Brion
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I know Jean Delmas, whom I respect as one of the world’s greatest wine producers, has always thought the 1982 Haut Brion was similar to the 1959, but I have yet to see that. It seems to me the 1989 is closer to the 1959, another perfect wine and one of the all-time great Haut Brions. While the 1982 is a beauty, it has never hit the highest notes this vintage or terroir can achieve. Complex aromatics of scorched earth, smoked herbs, and sweet red and black currants are followed by a full-bodied, silky-textured wine, but I have never felt this offering has possessed the concentration, texture, or multidimensional personality found in such vintages as 1989, 1990, and more recent years. Nevertheless, this is essentially splitting hairs as the 1982 remains a superb Haut Brion. Seemingly less evolved than the 1990, it is capable of another 20-30 years of longevity. Perhaps there is something in reserve that will reveal itself in the next decade. Drink now-2035. Robert Parker 95
Good medium amber-edge red. Flamboyant aromas of smoked meat, leather, truffle and burnished oak. Intensely flavored and penetrating, with strong acids giving the flavors terrific cut and grip. I get an impression of strong cabernet tannins. Drink now through 2020. 94. My second bottle showed even more extravagantly expressive aromas of hot stones, tobacco, minerals and marzipan; a denser, silkier palate impression, with more obvious roasted Graves character; and an uncanny combination of sheer sweetness with structure and grip. I rated this wine even higher.
-- Stephen Tanzer 96 Vinous