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Carruades de Lafite (Futures Pre-Sale) 2017

  • TA94
  • WE93
  • JS93
  • JD93
  • RP92
  • D91
750ML / 0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
TA 94
Tim Atkin
Deep purple colour. Warm coffee and nutty oak aromas, with cassis and blueberry fruit. Juicy and sweet fruit, with great depth and layered complexity. Spicy tannins, fresh acidity and ripe dry tannins. Great concentration and depth. Elegant and yet complex. No greenness. Very good.
Barrel Sample: 92-94
WE 93
Wine Enthusiast
A classic blend with 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 35% Merlot, this is richly structured and well concentrated. Its dark black fruit notes give both depth and a juicy character to match the structure.
Barrel Sample: 91-93
JS 93
James Suckling
A bright Carruades with cedar and tobacco character. Medium to full body and medium chewy tannins. Very pretty center palate.
Barrel Sample: 92-93
JD 93
Jeb Dunnuck
The second wine of the estate is certainly no slouch in the vintage either. The 2017 Carruades de Lafite offers a similar perfume of cassis, scorched earth and lead pencil shavings, and is medium-bodied, seamless, and silky on the palate. As with the Grand Vin, the tannin quality is terrific, it’s perfectly balanced, and shines for its purity of fruit.
Barrel Sample: 91-93
RP 92
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The medium to deep garnet-purple colored 2017 Carruades de Lafite is composed of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc and opens with expressive notes of espresso and dark chocolate over a core of cassis, wood smoke and tilled soil plus touches of truffles and black olives. Medium-bodied, very fine-grained and refreshing, it has great poise and a long, savory finish.
Barrel Sample: 90-92
D 91
Decanter
Lafite got to enjoy a year without excess and without frost, and this is elegant stuff. The tannins are a touch rigid at the beginning, supporting firm black autumnal fruits, classically framed and a touch austere, with cigar box smoke adding a swirl of complexity. As with many of the second wines in Pauillac this year, this is excellently put together but on the savoury side, reflecting the story of the vintage. 20% new oak. This is sure to age well and be ready to drink within four to eight years.
Barrel Sample
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Carruades de Lafite

Carruades de Lafite

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Carruades de Lafite, France
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Carruades is the second label wine produced by Chateau Lafite-Rothschild. After fermentation and maceration, the wines are tasted, selected and put together according to their different qualities. This step is very important because this is where we make the difference between the great "Lafite" and the second wine "Carruades de Lafite". The wines are drained off into oak barrels. We use 100% new barrels for the ageing of Lafite. The year after, these same barrels will be used for the Carruades.

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The leader on the Left Bank in number of first growth classified producers within its boundaries, Pauillac has more than any of the other appellations, at three of the five. Chateau Lafite Rothschild and Mouton Rothschild border St. Estephe on its northern end and Chateau Latour is at Pauillac’s southern end, bordering St. Julien.

While the first growths are certainly some of the better producers of the Left Bank, today they often compete with some of the “lower ranked” producers (second, third, fourth, fifth growth) in quality and value. The Left Bank of Bordeaux subscribes to an arguably outdated method of classification that goes back to 1855. The finest chateaux in that year were judged on the basis of reputation and trading price; changes in rank since then have been miniscule at best. Today producers such as Chateau Pontet-Canet, Chateau Grand Puy-Lacoste, Chateau Lynch-Bages, among others (all fifth growth) offer some of the most outstanding wines in all of Bordeaux.

Defining characteristics of fine wines from Pauillac (i.e. Cabernet-based Bordeaux Blends) include inky and juicy blackcurrant, cedar or cigar box and plush or chalky tannins.

Layers of gravel in the Pauillac region are key to its wines’ character and quality. The layers offer excellent drainage in the relatively flat topography of the region allowing water to run off into “jalles” or streams, which subsequently flow off into the Gironde.

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One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde River, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

Tasting Notes for Bordeaux Blends

Bordeaux Blends are dry, red wines and generally have aromas and flavors of black currant, black cherry plum, graphite, cedar and violet. Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines, modeled after the Right Bank, are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure.

Perfect Food Pairings for Bordeaux Blends

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secrets for Bordeaux Blends

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

CVBF422619_2017 Item# 422619

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