Domaine Clarence Dillon Presents The Chateau Haut-Brion Historical Challenge:
Discover the Authenticated and Earliest Written Mention
of the Fine Wine of Chateau Haut-Brion


  • English
  • French

"Loading the player…"
King Charles II of England’s cellar book - Photo courtesy of Public Record Office, Kew, L.S. 13/91, Cellar Book of Charles II, 1660-1661
King Charles II of England’s cellar book - Photo courtesy of Public Record Office, Kew, L.S. 13/91, Cellar Book of Charles II, 1660-1661
King Charles II of England © National Portrait Gallery, London
King Charles II of England © National Portrait Gallery, London
Château Haut-Brion
Château Haut-Brion

PARIS, May 31st, 2013, PRNewswire – On April 10th, 2013, Cambridge University and Chateau Haut-Brion celebrated the 350th anniversary of Samuel Pepys’ famous diary entry which cemented the First Growth’s reputation as one of, if not the, First Luxury Brand in the world.

“Off to the Exchange with Sir J Cutler and Mr Grant to the Royall Oak Taverne in Lumbard Street… And there drank a sort of French wine called Ho Bryan, that hath a good and most particular taste that I never met with.”

10 years ago, an even earlier mention of Chateau Haut-Brion (“Hobriono”) was discovered in the cellar book of King Charles II of England, dated 1660. Professor Charles Ludington, Teaching Assistant Professor of History at North Carolina State University, discovered this mention while working on his thesis, Politics and the Taste for Wine in England and Scotland, 1660-1860, Columbia University, 2003.

“In the XIIth year of the reign of Charles II – Written in the Office of the Pantry, the Butler and the Cellar of the Lord King in the year of our lord 1660-1661.Paid Joseph Batailhe for 169 Bls [bottles]1 parcel wine of Hobriono [Haut-Brion] for himself personally delivering for the Lord King and hospitality at 21s 4d per Bl with full jugs and measures of £180-5-4 and 60 Bls 2 parcels of wine of Graves at 28 (…) per dozen, £32-2-8 in total, in the months of June and January.” *

In order to encourage further research into the great wines of Bordeaux and the History of Chateau Haut-Brion, Domaine Clarence Dillon will be offering a very significant prize to any person, Researcher or Scholar, who uncovers an earlier written mention of this wine.

All entries will be considered… but only the earliest written mention of the wine by name will be eligible to earn the Prize.

The Challenge is out there and the Grand Winner will be announced in early October 2014.

See Rules and Conditions of “The Chateau Haut-Brion Historical Challenge”.

* Literal transcription of the Latin (without translation):

“Anno XII N’s Caroli Secundi – Lidger in officio Paner Buttill et Cellar Do[mi]ni Regis An[n]o Do[mi]ni 1660 :1661, Adse : br. Joseph Batailhe pro Clxix Bls 1 pl vin de Hobriono per ipsu deliberat inebbis pro Dno Rege et Hospitio ad xxis iiiid le Bl cum obbis et ollis ciiii [with ‘xx’ written over the ‘iiii’] li vs iiiid et lx Bls ii pls vin de Graves ad xxviii (…) doz xxxii li iis viiid In toto mensis Junii et Januarii”