Well, well, well - Lafite Rothschild does it again. Ever since manager Charles Chevalier was transferred from his beloved Sauternes property of Rieussec (also owned by the Rothschilds) to Lafite in 1994, there has been a succession of profound wines to emerge from this noble estate. The 2000 Lafite Rothschild, a blend of 93.3% Cabernet Sauvignon and 6.7% Merlot (only 36% of the crop made the grade) has an opaque ruby/purple color, followed by an extraordinary aromatic expression of liquid minerals/stones interwoven with the tell-tale graphite notes, mulberry, black currants, caramel, and tobacco. In the mouth, it is remarkably light on its feet, but somehow seems to pack intense flavors into layer upon layer of fruit and richness that cascade over the palate. A compelling wine, with extraordinary precision, great intensity, and a seamlessness in spite of what are obviously elevated levels of tannin, this wine was provocatively open and beautiful when tasted in January and February, but I am sure it will soon close down. The finish lasted a whopping 72 seconds! This is utterly fascinating stuff. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2050.
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