Amongst the upper echelons of Saint-Estèphe, Château Haut-Marbuzet comfortably sits in competition with the equally eminent Cos d’Estournel and Montrose châteaux. The Duboscq family has owned and run the impressive Cru Bourgeois growth since the 1950s. Today, Henri Duboscq and his two sons, Bruno and Hughes manage the 61-hectare property. With close to half of the vines dedicated to Merlot, this high proportion accentuates the fleshy, plush side of Haut-Marbuzet wines. The grapes here are harvested exceedingly ripe, the wine is then aged in 100% new-oak barriques for 18 months. Duboscq’s extremely rich Saint-Estèphe displays the flawlessly treaded spiced notes coming from barrel maturation. The top wine, Haut-Marbuzet is a concentrated red, with brilliant notes of vanilla and subtler dark fruits, and like all the wines here, each bottle invariably outshines many of the offerings coming from the château’s biggest rivals.