Château Haut-Marbuzet: Tasting & Drinking

Read the works of a number of commentators on Bordeaux and it soon becomes clear that some hold the wines of Château Haut-Marbuzet, as shaped by Hervé Duboscq, in the highest regard, with Clive Coates once ranking it third in the commune behind only Château Montrose and Château Cos d’Estournel. Friends of mine who have been drinking claret far longer than I have also think highly of the wines, and there are occasions when it is clear that Hervé Duboscq also had supreme confidence in his products, demanding an asking price the equivalent of that for his first vintage. A little more objective than these personal opinions, however, was the positioning of Château Haut-Marbuzet in the Liv-Ex reworking of the 1855 classification, published in 2009. Château Haut-Marbuzet was ranked as a fourth growth, the highest placing for any château (apart from the châteaux of Pessac-Léognan) not in the original classification. In fact, apart from Château Sociando-Mallet, it was the only Médoc château to make a new entry in this fashion.

Hervé Duboscq was a determined character, one who flew in the face of all around him , and was not afraid to ruffle a few aristocratic Ginestet-family feathers at neighbouring Château Marbuzet in the process. Although he and his offspring have continued the marketing offensive – over the past few decades the wine has been listed by any number of top restaurant, hotels and airlines – the attention to detail and quality also remains high. This is yet another estate, like Château Ormes de Pez, Château Phelan-Ségur and Château de Pez which outclasses the lower rungs of the classified growths in this commune. (20/9/07, updated 3/4/13)

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