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Carruades de Lafite 2018

Subregion France > Bordeaux > Left Bank > Pauillac
Grape VarietyCabernet Sauvignon

The Second wine of Chateau Lafite. Thanks to the fact that the label design is very similar to that of Lafite itself, demand for Carruades from China is enormous and prices tend to be very high. In 2018 this is 56.5% Cabernet Sauvignon and contains all of Lafite's Cabernet Franc (5.5%) and most of the Merlot (38%).

View all vintages of this wine | View all wines by Château Lafite Rothschild


Tasting Notes

Exquisitely fine tannins to the currant, lead-pencil and chocolate character. The palate is full, yet very refined and linear with a long, lingering finish. Such polish and tension. The tannins are intense, yet so fine, giving almost a powdery texture. So Lafite-like. Best Carruades ever? 56% cabernet sauvignon and 38% merlot, the rest cabernet franc. Drink after 2026.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, March 2021

The 2018 Carruades de Lafite is a blend of 56.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot and 5.5% Cabernet Franc. Deep garnet-purple colored, it comes skipping out of the glass with bright, cheery scents of redcurrant jelly, blackcurrant pastilles and Morello cherries with hints of candied violets, pencil shavings, menthol and crushed rocks. Medium-bodied and elegantly styled, with layers of crunchy red and black fruits, it has a beautifully ripe, fine-grained texture and loads of freshness, finishing long and mineral laced. 2023 - 2039.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate, March 2021

This has rich fruit notes with exotic spices, a silky texture and a seductive approachability that clearly translates the higher than usual amount of Merlot in the blend this year, as with Petit Mouton. It’s a wine that is bound to make a lot of people happy but also means that whereas Lafite is archetypal Lafite, this is perhaps a less classic Carruades.

It still has the tannins of Pauillac, and as so often is the case this year the first time you taste feels easy then they steal up on you and start to layer but this is flexible and approachable, with a menthol finish.

Carruades is continuing to benefit from the techniques brought to it under in-house R&D technician Manuela Brando which include honing vineyard mapping, detailing smaller plots and tracking vine vigour, all of which are particularly useful since Carruades' soils are less consistent than those of the main wine. 39% of production.

Drinking Window 2024 - 2036

Jane Anson, Decanter.com, April 2019

Tasted blind. Light and a bit muddy. Lacking real concentration. A bit sweet and sour. Then drying tannins on the end. 13.5%
Drink 2028 – 2040

Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, February 2022

56.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot, 5.5% Cabernet Franc. They have made big improvements in the vineyard with soil and vigour analysis to improve selection. 'Surgical precision', says technical director Eric Kohler. They had done this in Lafite but not for Carruades and its vineyards are more heterogeneous so it has made even more difference. Carruades benefited therefore not just from this but also from the Merlot that would have been good enough for Lafite but was not needed. Barrel sample.
Dark core with narrow dark rim. Very ripe but not overripe black fruit. Rich and savoury at the same time, a really dark, elegant wine with good acidity. The tannins here are notable for their extreme finesse, dry, wonderful texture, with a hint of clean dry dark chocolate on the finish. Fabulous tannins. Juicy and so elegant at the same time. Light on its feet even with this concentration. High score is especially for the tannins.
Drink 2024-2038

Julia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2019

An impressively deep colour in the glass, with notes of pure cassis and ripe plums bolstered by cedar and tobacco. The palate is bright and juicy but fresh with acidity and chalky tannins. Savoury blackcurrant and red cherries, dried leaves and cedar, there is good complexity and more weight than normal. The tannins melt into the wine and allow the fruit to shine, hinting that this will drink well in its youth. Harmonious and lifted, this is bright but not light, with good intensity that lingers on an impressively long finish. This is without doubt one of the best Carruades in recent years, and may turn out to be the best ever.

Farr Vintners, Farr Tasting, April 2019

The second wine of Lafite is the 2018 Carruades De Lafite (56.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc). This ruby/purple colored effort offers classic Lafite elegance and purity as well as lead pencil, red and black currants, and tobacco. Elegant, silky, ultra-fine and beautifully balanced, with ripe tannins, it's a smoking second wine that’s going to keep for 2-3 decades.

Jeb Dunnuck, JebDunnuck.com, May 2019

(56.5 Cabernet Sauvignon, 38 Merlot, 5.5 Cabernet Franc) | 13.9% alc There is superb balance here and the Merlot is the driver, given that the Merlot performed so well in this vintage. Carruades benefits from Merlot which didn’t, in the end, go into the Grand Vin because it didn’t ‘fit’. The density, richness and length are stunning and the freshness is incredible for this wine. It is one of my favourite Carruades I can remember. Long, lithe, smooth and refreshing this is a delicious, lip-smacking wine.

Matthew Jukes, MatthewJukes.com, April 2019
Read more tasting notes...

This is an extremely fine-grained Carraudes with a complex character of chocolate, walnut, cedar and a hint of graphite. Medium-to full-bodied, tight and chewy but, at the same time, agile and light. Savory finish. Special.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, April 2019

The 2018 Carruades de Lafite is composed of 56.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 38% Merlot and 5.5% Cabernet Franc. The Merlot was harvested September 17-24, the Cabernet Sauvignon was harvested September 25 to October 5, and the Cabernet Franc was harvested September 24. Deep garnet-purple colored, it reveals a very serious nose of pencil shavings, black tea, violets and dark chocolate with earthy wafts of underbrush and mossy bark over a core of warm cassis, blackberry preserves and black raspberries. Medium to full-bodied, the densely packed, black-fruited palate is laced with loads of compelling mineral sparks with a firm, grainy frame and beautiful freshness to lift the long, earthy finish.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (April 2019), April 2019
Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.