It was in 1855 that Château Haut Brion was honored with the highest distinction of Médoc wines: Premier Cru Classé (First Growth). Château Haut Brion is the only non-Médoc domain to be included in the Médoc wine list, as well as the Graves wine classification as a Classified Growth!
Its soil is similar to elsewhere as a brother of Latour. Without being the most concentrated, Haut Brion is the most noble of wines from Pessac-Leognan and its longevity is unparalleled in the industry. The silky tannins are always exceptional. Chateau Haut-Brion is the oldest and yet the smallest of vineyards classified as Premiers Grands Crus in 1855 (Château Lafite-Rothschild, Château Latour, Château Margaux, Château Mouton Rothschild, Château Haut-Brion).
Although the vineyard has been active in the region since at least Roman times, the first mention of vineyards of Haut-Brion dates back only to 1423. In the early days, the wines were known by the name of the parishes where they came from. In the case of Haut-Brion, under the leadership of Pontac, the wine first bore the name of this noble and respectable family. Haut Brion was founded in 1525 by Jean de Pontac and since famous people have succeeded. The last of them, Clarence Douglas Dillon, was Minister of Finance of the United States under the Kennedy administration. As its reputation grew, the name of the estate came to replace that of its owners. The concept of Grand Cru is born! We find the first mention in the diary of Samuel Pepys, who wrote April 10, 1663: "I just tasted a French wine called Ho-Bryan (sic) which has the best and most special taste I've ever enountered."
Among the many great vintages of Château Haut Brion, the exceptional vintages are 1926, 1945, 1953, 1959, 1961, 1982, 1990, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2000.