Boasting a vineyard whose quality of land for vine cultivation has been recognised in local archives dating back to 1461, Chateau Haut-Bailly has quite a prestigious heritage. Earning the title of Classified Growth of Graves in 1953, Chateau Haut-Bailly turned a new page in its history following its acquisition by Robert G. Wilmers in 1998. Passionate about Bordeaux and its wines, this great patron and lover of French culture worked alongside his wife to perpetuate the historical heritage of Chateau Haut-Bailly. He took an innovative and modern approach to elevate the wines of the estate to the highest level of quality before his death in December 2017. General Manager of the property, Veronique Sanders, works with Chris Wilmers, President of the area’s supervisory board as well as Gabriel Vialard, the technical director, to manage this iconic Pessac-Leognan estate with plenty of talent and passion.
Situated at the top of a hill in Graves, Chateau Haut-Bailly watches over 30 hectares of vines spread over gravel, clay and sand soils. The gentle slopes of the hill promote excellent soil drainage.
Winter and spring were marked by heavy rainfall. If budding was particularly early, spring frost from the nights of 25 and 26 March impacted the local vineyard. The heavy rainfall in early May was balanced out over time by hot and dry conditions, which allowed for flowering two weeks in advance. The first fifteen days of June were gloomy and conducive to mildew. Cluster closure ended around 15 June, nearly three weeks in advance. A hot and dry summer set in from 20 June, reaching unprecedented drought accompanied by heatwaves in July and early August. Thanks to its deep rooting, the vineyard was able to tolerate this drought. The early ripening was heterogeneous. The stormy episodes from 11 to 13 August cooled temperatures down, reinforced ripening and relieved water stress from young vines. The harvested grapes were fully ripe, fruity, rich in sugar and very concentrated. The yields were the same as those from 2010.
This 2020 vintage is the first to have been produced in the property's new cellar. Initiated in 2017 by Robert Wilmers shortly before his death, the construction of this majestic state-of-the-art cellar was launched in 2018 by his son, Chris Wilmers, Chairman of the supervisory board of the estate. Designed by architect Daniel Romeo, this very elegant infrastructure integrates seamlessly into its natural environment and offers an excellent space for achieving high-precision winemaking.
Balanced and wonderfully fresh, this 2020 Chateau Haut-Bailly seduces with its complexity, density, great texture and elegant tannins.