Of course, the wine to buy in order to get a look at the Lafite Rothschild style and personality is their second wine, Carruades de Lafite, which has become very fashionable in Asia, causing the prices to soar. A very strong effort, the 2009 Carruades de Lafite may be the finest Carruades since the 2003. A blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42% Merlot and tiny amounts of Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, it reveals lots of sweet cassis intermixed with subtle smoke and forest floor, undeniable lusciousness and full-bodied hedonism. The wood component is pushed to the background, and the wine is extremely viscous, round and delicious. Additional complexity should continue to emerge over the next decade and this 2009 should keep for 20-30 years.
The Carruades de Lafite has a deep garnet/purple hue. It is more approachable than the Grand Vin, with scents of blackberry, tar, graphite and a touch of ink. The palate has quite stemmy and foursquare, not a complex Carruades and I feel just a little short on the finish. I much prefer the Duhart this year. Tasted November 2011.
Currants and blackberries on the nose. Spicy and intense undertones. Full body, with juicy fruit and a soft, very silky texture and a long, long finish. Polished and very pretty. Best Carraudes ever. Try in 2018.
55% of the crop. 51% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42% Merlot, 2% Petit Verdot, 5% Cabernet Franc. Very deep crimson with a slightly pale rim. And lots of blue in it - a bit of press wine? Sumptuous nose already. Lightly inky start but then luscious texture and so round and polished. Great freshness and enormous polish, Doesn't taste as though there was lots of press wine in here. Great round stuff. Just a little kick at the end and a very slight hole towards the very end of the palate - otherwise fabissimo. But quite early maturing? Date tasted 1st April 2010. Drink 2015-2025.
The nose is very perfumed, the fruit sweet. Ripe flavours flesh out the mid palate, the lushness is though well balanced by some bilberry, freshness that lifts and lengthens the flavours. It has lots of charm, rich yet elegant. Drink 2020-2040.
As at Latour, the quality of the second wine is testament to the brilliance of the grand vin in 2009. This is a very elegant claret: aromatic and complete with subtle oak, fragrant redcurrant and raspberry fruit, silky, fine-grained tannins and a long, stylish finish. The price (at least on the secondary market) may well go unjustifiably bonkers, but the wine is still excellent. 10+ years
Dense red, fine fragrant red/black fruits, firm and elegant structure, restrained, almost serious wine that promises a good future. Drink 2015-22.
The best Carruades de Lafite I have ever tasted is the 2009. Composed of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42% Merlot, and the rest Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, 55% of the crop was included in this second wine. It is an atypically powerful Carruades with slightly higher alcohol than usual as well as considerable structure. There are plenty of creme de cassis and crushed rock notes as well as a subtle wood component, and super intensity and lushness. It is an amazing effort! For technocrats, Lafite began its harvest on September 23 and finished on October 8. (Tasted once.)
Robert Parker added an asterisk to this wine score to signify that it is a wine he considers has the finest potential of all the offerings he has ever tasted from this estate in nearly 32 years of barrel tasting samples in Bordeaux.
A blend of 50.6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 42.4% Merlot, 2.2% Petit Verdot and 5% Cabernet Franc, the Carruades has a refined, very well delineated bouquet of blackberry, a touch of plum, Mirabelle, cedar and smoke. The palate is medium-bodied, fine tannins, smooth and sensuous, not a powerful Carruades, more approachable than previous vintages, the tannins a little softer and smoother. Good length. Very fine…but it does not exceed expectations. Tasted March 2010.
Sweet berry and currant on the nose, with hints of cedar and sandalwood. Full-bodied, with wonderful milk chocolate and berry character. Long and supersilky. Love the balance to this. Slightly green tea aromas and flavors at the finish hold me back a little.