The 1997 Lafite-Rothschild may turn out to be a modern day replay of the glorious 1976. Complex, with considerable finesse, elegance, and a sexy, approachable style, this dark ruby/purple-colored, medium-bodied wine already reveals copious quantities of the tell-tale Lafite scents of mineral, lead pencil, and cedar. This rich yet graceful Lafite displays no trace of aggressiveness or hardness. It is an approachable, lush wine that will evolve quickly, yet keep for 15-20 years. Drink: 1998-2018. Lafite's harvest occurred between September 8 (beginning with the Merlot) and October 2. For some Cabernet Sauvignon parcels, there were an exceptional 135 days (the norm being 105-110 days) between the flowering and harvest. This estate, which made a profoundly great 1996, utilized only 28% of its harvest for the 1997 grand vin. Moreover, the selection for the second wine, Carruades, was also severe.
I thought the 1997 Lafite-Rothschild to be one of the vintage's stars. Made in a precocious style, not very massive and concentrated, it possesses aromas of lead pencil, minerals, plums, and black currant fruit. Exhibiting surprising richness, a supple texture, medium body, and delicious purity and ripeness, this light-styled but beautiful Lafite-Rothschild should be ready to drink in 3-5 years. Anticipated maturity: 2004-2018.
Only 26% of the crop made it into the final blend, resulting in only 15,000 cases of the 1997 Lafite-Rothschild. Readers should not ignore this wine because of the negative press surrounding the 1997 vintage. It boasts an opaque dense purple color in addition to a gorgeously sweet, expansive perfume of cedar wood, black currants, lead pencil, and minerals. What follows is a fat mid-palate, medium body, explosive fruit and richness, soft tannin, and a velvety texture. It is a beautiful, compelling Lafite-Rothschild that can be drunk young, yet promises to evolve for 15+ years. Although one of the most forward Lafites ever tasted, it is all the more captivating because of this characteristic. Don't miss it! Drink 2000-2015.
Very deep crimson. Not much elegance. Bit earthbound and extremely tough. Awfully tannic.Drink 2006 - 2020
One peek into Château Lafite's cellar is like entering into the 18th century. Its cobweb-coveredchandeliers subtly light shadowy corridors that play host to hundreds of ancient vintages. Nothing could be more representative of its wine making philosophy - classic, stylish and yet powerful - characteristics that have made it one of the most collectible wines in the world.
Due south of St Estèphe lies the appellation of Pauillac, the king of Left Bank communes. It is home to three first growths as well as a plethora of other classified growths. Pauillac's renowned well-draining, gravelly soils enable its dominant grape Cabernet Sauvignon to reach fantastic heights of complexity and concentration. As a result, Pauilac's wines tend to be full-bodied with compact tannins and good freshness. Its aromatics are often what one associates with classic Bordeaux: pencil shavings, black currant and occasional mint. Some of the most famous châteaux of the commune are Latour, Mouton Rothschild, Lafite Rothschild, Pichon Baron, Pichon Lalande and Lynch Bages.