Smith Haut Lafitte, Pessac-Léognan Rouge 750ml 2000France, Bordeaux
The 2000 rouge was probably this estate's most successful wine since the arrival of the dynamic Cathiard couple in 1990. ‘Since everything comes from the soil, we at Château Smith Haut Lafitte do our utmost to respect nature both in the vineyard (biodiversity) and the cellar,’ says the Cathiard family.
The 2000 was aged for 18 months in oak barrels (80% new) made at the château cooperage. Smith Haut Lafitte is one of the few châteaux to have their own in-house cooperage.
‘One can’t say enough about this winery, which may still fly under the radar of most consumers. The fully mature 2000 displays gorgeous aromas of camphor, lead pencil shavings, unsmoked tobacco, plums, and black currants. With full body, a velvety texture, and beautiful weight, richness, and length, this superb wine should evolve, possibly improve for another 15 years. It’s a beauty!’ – Robert Parker, Wine Advocate, 95/100
‘The Cathiards have made a polished wine with generous fruit. It manages to combine a modern, rich style with a lightness of touch and freshness of fruit which make it instantly attractive.’ – Wine Enthusiast, 93/100
‘Showing a bit more maturity than some peers, this pushes singed cedar and smoldering alder flavors to the fore, along with well-mulled currant and fig fruit notes backed by a prominent tobacco edge on the finish. There's a pretty sweetness of fruit here, even though this is fully into a secondary phase.’ – Wine Spectator, 91/100
‘Good full ruby. Roasted red and black fruits, smoke and licorice on the nose. Powerful, even a bit aggressive, with less sweetness and subtlety than the subsequent vintages. Finishes with big, chewy, ripe tannins and lingering notes of tobacco and leather. Very Graves in style.’ – Stephen Tanzer, 90/100
‘Magnum. Dark, blackish ruby with a still-lively rim. Dark, glowing, blackish ruby. Lift and some vaguely Asian spices (or do I mean ladies’ handbags?). Interesting aromas anyway and nicely blended into a mature bouquet. Not pushy in any way. In fact rather muted and low key, but a lovely balance of ripeness and freshness. Just slightly dry on the end – I wonder whether they were experimenting with oak at this time? A little bit dry on the end. Some energy and pulsating force. Some dry tannins on the end. Lusciousness. Charm but not great density. Hint of green apple on the finish.’ – Jancis Robinson, 17.5/20
|Producer||Smith Haut Lafitte|
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AG: Antonio Galloni of Vinous.com | AM: Allen Meadows of Burghound.com | CE: Christian Eedes of Winemag.co.za | DEC: Decanter | GS: Greg Sherwood MW | JR: JancisRobinson.com | NM: Neal Martin of Vinous.com OM: Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show | PG: Platter's Guide | TA: Tim Atkin MW | WA: Wine Advocate | WE: Wine Enthusiast | WS: Wine Spectator