Le Petit Haut Lafitte Red, Pessac Leognan 2016 MAGNUM
Second wine of Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte, yet worthy of praise in its own right. Precise, focused and beautifully balanced
Only 6 left in stock
Large Formats, Second Wines, Winter Warmers, Women in Wine
Bordeaux Blend, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Other Varietals
Bordeaux Chateaux, Smith Haut-Lafitte
Bordeaux, Bordeaux – Left Bank
|Critics Top Rating
Château Smith-Haut-Lafitte has been transformed during the last decade from being a perennial underachiever to being one of the leading estates in the Graves region.
For many years it was owned by the Bordeaux négociant Eschenauer – in 1990 it was bought by former Olympic skiing champion, Daniel Cathiard. He cut down on the amount of chemicals and herbicides used in the vineyards, and fully modernized the winemaking facilities. The proportion of new oak barrels used in the maturation process was increased and a trio of eminent oenologists (including the ubiquitous Michel Rolland) were hired as consultants.
The 55 hectares of vineyards are located on a gravel ridge to the east of Château Haut-Bailly.
Le Petit Haut Lafitte is the Second wine, made from younger vines.
Blend – 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot
Winemaking – Created during the blending process of the Grand vin, the winemaking is identical and made from younger vines. Slow fermentation in Oak barrels.
Ageing – For 14 months in French oak barrels of which 20% new, and all made on the estate
A dark deep and dense red color, leading to an expressive nose of elegant red and black fruits of cherry, raspberry, blackcurrant with aromatic herbs notes. The palate is rich and concentrated, with good acidity and smooth tannins.
Palate is aromatic and delicate with fresh fruit, Pierre a fusil, dry herb and lovely floral touch.
Wine Enthusiast – 93-95 points
93–95. Barrel Sample. The wine, a majority of young Cabernet Sauvignon with Merlot, is structured and firm with solid tannins and layers of black currant. This will be ready to be drink after 2025.
Wine Enthusiast – 93 points
A hugely enjoyable wine that is intense and concentrated, with chocolate shavings, liquorice and damson, plus a brushed velvet texture. This is a vintage where the Cabernet Sauvignon did exceptionally well (55% with 45% Merlot), and it suits the style of this wine: powerful but finessed, but still no need to wait too long to begin drinking.
James Suckling – 92 points
Wine Advocate – 91-93 points
The 2016 Le Petit Haut Lafitte is a blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 40% Merlot matured in 20% new oak. It has a well-defined bouquet with mulberry, cranberry, pressed flowers and a touch of undergrowth; it is neatly defined though not powerful, but it does demonstrare commendable precision. The palate is medium-bodied with crisp and firm tannin, quite tensile and energetic (more so than the Les Hauts de Smith) with impressive structure and length on the almost Pauillac-like, graphite infused finish. Do not ignore this little gem from Château Smith Haut-Lafitte, because it always punches above its weight.