Chateau Haut Bailly 1988
- Merlot,Cabernet Sauvignon
Dark chocolate, with meat, fresh mushroom and a light espresso undertone. Full-bodied, with ultrarefined tannins and a meaty, berry, earth and spice undertone, even game. Rich and generous. What a surprise. Much better than I remember.—'88/'98 Bordeaux blind retrospective (2008). Drink now. - WS92
Careful research in the archives of Château Haut-Bailly reveals the ancient origins of this estate. Already, in 1461, vines were cultivated on this land which at the time was known as « Pujau » (« small height » in Gascon) to emphasize the topography of its exceptional terroir. The foundations of the modern vineyard, however, came from the 1530s, under the leadership of the Goyanèche family and then the Daitze family. These wealthy Basque merchants began buying up prime plots of land. A ‘bourdieu’ (the old name for a wine château in Bordeaux) was soon created.
Following his death, Gaillard Daitze’s heirs took over and continued to manage the estate until it was sold in 1630 to Firmin Le Bailly and Nicolas de Leuvarde. Both men were bankers in Paris as well as great admirers of Graves wines. Recognising the potential of the land, they invested significant funds and built a manor house. Firmin even gave his name to the property. After his death in 1655, the estate was handed down from heir to heir for almost a century. In 1736, the running of the estate was assigned to Thomas Barton, of Irish origin, head of a major trading company specialising in fine wines. Benefiting from a huge amount of business relations in England and Ireland the wines of Château Haut-Bailly started to be greatly appreciated by the "New French claret" fans.