Château-Smith-Haut-Lafitte Pessac Leognan 2012
Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte has a long history in Bordeaux dating back over 800 years. The estate started as part of the Du Boscq holdings in the Graves region. It was Du Boscq who planted vines in 1365 on a gravelly plateau called Lafitte, which is how the famous chateau was named. George Smith bought the Graves estate in 1720 and added his name to the property, becoming Smith Haut Lafitte.
Today, Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte is owned and managed by Daniel Cathiard and Florence Cathiard. The Cathiard’s purchased the Bordeaux estate in 1990. They bought the estate from a well known Bordeaux negociant and importer to America, Louis Eschenauer. According to Daniel Cathiard, there were numerous estates in Bordeaux for sale at the time. But a big part of the reason they purchased Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte had to do with the fact that Smith Haut Lafitte is one of the few Bordeaux vineyards producing both red and white wines.
For reds, the estate is lanted to 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc with an average vine age of 30 years, 'today Smith Haut Lafitte is one of Bordeaux's shining success stories, reflecting what hard work and conscientious propietors can achieve in a short period of time.' Robert Parker The style of this gorgeous wine combines richness and concentration with finesse and elegance.
Wine AdvocateThe opaque bluish-purple 2012 Smith Haut Lafite offers up notes of licorice, graphite, blueberry and blackberry fruit, a medium to full-bodied mouthfeel, stunningly ripe, velvety tannins and a long, long finish. This is another sensational effort from the Cathiards that is perfectly balanced, complex, super-rich and pure. Drink it over the next 20-25 years. This is another great turn-around effort that dated from the acquisition of this once moribund estate in 1990, by Daniel and Florence Cathiard. They continue to do an exemplary job with both white and red.
Wine SpectatorLayered fig, boysenberry and blackberry pâte de fruit notes are buttressed by ample, yet polished and integrated, ganache-coated tannins, while accents of black tea, ganache and tar course underneath. A really gorgeous display of fruit, showing terroir and cut on the finish. Best from 2018 through 2027.
Wine EnthusiastThis dark and dense wine is closed, with its tannins very dominant. It's a solid, dark wine intense with juicy acidity, firm dry structure and a rich core. This is a magnificent wine for serious aging, with all the elements coming strongly into play. Drink from 2022.