It has been a few years since I last tasted the 2004 Haut-Brion. Now at 12 years of age, it retains its deep color. The bouquet is "pleasant" if not as complex as the 2004 Latour, yet its possibly just biding its time as it gradually opens with black fruit, black olive, even a touch of mint that might dupe you into thinking Pauillac. The palate is medium-bodied and very harmonious, almost caressing thanks to the Merlot lending that velvety texture. The second half changes tack, the Cabernet nudging the Merlot off the stage and delivering a more structured, possibly foursquare finish that is linear and correct. It is an excellent wine for the vintage although it will always be overshadowed by the 2005 inter alia. Maybe more personality just needs to develop? Tasted September 2016.
(229, The Wine Advocate)