Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte  2016  Front Label
Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte  2016  Front LabelChateau Smith Haut Lafitte  2016  Front Bottle Shot

Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte 2016

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  • RP98
  • D98
  • JS97
  • WE97
  • JD97
750ML / 14% ABV
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4.3 25 Ratings
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4.3 25 Ratings
750ML / 14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Blend: 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc, 1% Petit Verdot

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
WS 98
Wine Spectator
Quite ripe, with lush waves of cassis, cherry preserve and raspberry puree flavors gliding through in no hurry, but maintaining definition and cut along the way as bramble, tar and melted licorice snap notes slowly emerge throughout. The finish features an intense echo of pastis and sweet tobacco, showing serious latent grip. Best from 2023 through 2038.
V 98
Vinous
The 2016 Smith Haut Lafitte is flat out stunning. Rich, ample and explosive, the 2016 possesses tremendous energy and tension to play off the wine's dark, rich fruit. I am not sure I have ever tasted a young Smith Haut Lafitte with such extraordinary balance. In 2016, the Grand Vin is tense and pulsing with energy. Hints of lavender, spice, menthol and crème de cassis open up in the glass, but the 2016 stands out for its feel and exceptional harmony. The combined effects of picking a bit early, vinifiying more gently and reducing the impact of oak are having a profound effect at Smith Haut Lafitte. Thinking of some of the highly regarded wines of the last decade here, the 2009 and 2010 in particular, well, the 2016 is on another level. This is magnificent showing from proprietors Florence and Daniel Cathiard, and their team led by Technical Director Fabien Teitgen.
RP 98
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Composed of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot and matured in 60% new oak for 18 months, the 2016 Smith Haut Lafitte has a very deep garnet-purple color, opening with sensuous scents of warm black cherries, blackberry pie, star anise and fragrant lilacs with hints of chocolate box, cigar box and pencil lead plus wafts of truffles and crushed rocks. Medium to full-bodied, rich and seductive, it completely fills the palate with perfumed black berry preserves and superbly plush tannins, finishing epically long and beautifully layered.
D 98
Decanter
A brilliant wine, one of the best ever at this property. Straight from the first nose you feel an added dimension and aromatic complexity to this bottle. The diversity of flavours tumbles out on the attack, from brambled autumnal fruits to tighter, fresher black cherry and cassis notes. The body is deeply coloured, full of life and pleasure, with rich, deep cassis and high but generous alcohol that's not intrusive but showing through in the smooth texture. It was great En primeur and is even better today. 1% Petit Verdot finishes the blend.
JS 97
James Suckling
The blackcurrant and blueberry aromas are lifted and beautiful. Lots of flowers, too, together with some mushroom and dried-flower undertones. Full-bodied with firm and very silky tannins giving a lovely texture. Bright acidity lifts the finish and gives it drive and force. Better after 2025
WE 97
Wine Enthusiast

This hugely dense wine is complex and full of juicy, succulent, smoky Cabernet Sauvignon. The tannins are at the service of the fruits. The wine still has a long way to go before maturity. Don’t think about drinking it before 2025.

JD 97
Jeb Dunnuck
Moving to the reds, the 2016 Château Smith Haut Lafitte checks in as 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc, and 1% Petit Verdot that spent 18 months in 60% new oak. It’s undeniably a more elegant, reserved style from this estate, yet it still offers full-bodied richness and depth, with a classic perfume of cassis, black currants, cold fireplace, wood smoke, and tobacco. Deep, nicely concentrated, seamless, and, again, incredibly elegant, it’s going to flesh out nicely with short-term cellaring and keep for 20-30 years.
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Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte

Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte

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Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, France
Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte Winery Image

Thanks to its 55 hectares of superb gravelly vineyards, Smith Haut Lafitte is often referred to as the "archetypical Graves." The estate's history goes back to the Crusades, and a Scottish navigator, George Smith, who became the owner of the estate in the 18th century. He was followed by M. Duffour-Dubergier, Mayor of Bordeaux, and then Louis Eschenauer, a famous wine shipper.

In 1990, Daniel and Florence Cathiard also fell under the spell of this beautiful estate. Since then, they have restored the 16th century tower, renovated the 18th century manor house, built two underground cellars, went back to traditional vine growing methods without chemical herbicides and set up their own cooperage. The perfect elegance, excellent balance and fine structure of Smith Haut Lafitte's red and white wines are the ultimate reflection of the current owners' total commitment to quality.

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Pessac-Leognan Wine

Bordeaux, France

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Recognized for its superior reds as well as whites, Pessac-Léognan on the Left Bank claims classified growths for both—making it quite unique in comparison to its neighboring Médoc properties.

Pessac’s Chateau Haut-Brion, the only first growth located outside of the Médoc, is said to have been the first to conceptualize fine red wine in Bordeaux back in the late 1600s. The estate, along with its high-esteemed neighbors, La Mission Haut-Brion, Les Carmes Haut-Brion, Pique-Caillou and Chateau Pape-Clément are today all but enveloped by the city of Bordeaux. The rest of the vineyards of Pessac-Léognan are in clearings of heavily forested area or abutting dense suburbs.

Arid sand and gravel on top of clay and limestone make the area unique and conducive to growing Sémillon and Sauvignon blanc as well as the grapes in the usual Left Bank red recipe: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and miniscule percentages of Petit Verdot and Malbec.

The best reds will show great force and finesse with inky blue and black fruit, mushroom, forest, tobacco, iodine and a smooth and intriguing texture.

Its best whites show complexity, longevity and no lack of exotic twists on citrus, tropical and stone fruit with pronounced floral and spice characteristics.

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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. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot, the best of these are densely hued, fragrant, full of fruit and boast a structure that begs for cellar time. Somm Secret—Blends from Bordeaux are generally earthier compared to those from the New World, which tend to be fruit-dominant.

MCY202546_2016 Item# 202546

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