This is almost black, calm on the nose, restrained elegance, the fruit underneath is really pure and static, pure and regal. The palate has tremendous proportion so well endowed with positive fruit bulging at the seams, the polished dusty tannins come crashing through on the finish, leaving the palate buzzing, the feel is brilliant classic cabernet reminds me of the 1996, will need some time.
Even stronger and more toned than the excellent 2015, this Lafite shows incredible power yet also finesse. Full-bodied, superfine and chewy wine. Muscular yet agile. Goes on for minutes. Stunning. Perhaps the greatest Lafite since the legendary 1959?
92% Cabernet Sauvignon picked from 29 September to 12 October, 8% Merlot picked 23 to 28 September. High IPT of 75. Very rich, dense dark crimson. Not much nose, just a vague impression of quality lurking beneath the super-subtle aroma. Round texture, tannins are in a very low register indeed. Then I'd love to see just a little bit more energy. Round and it may all get together. A really rather delicate Lafite. Nothing in excess, it's true and very classic claret - very Lafite - but arguably just a little muted.
The 2016 Lafite-Rothschild is polished, silky and captivatingly beautiful. There is a level of precision to the flavors that is simply mind-blowing. Even so, the 2016 remains ethereal and light on its feet, with all the grace of a ballerina. I imagine the 2016 will develop into a stunning wine once it comes together a bit more fully. Even so, it is striking today.
The 2016 Lafite-Rothschild is a blend of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon and 8% Merlot picked from 23 September until 12 October with the Cabernet Sauvignon (and unused Petit Verdot). It has 13.3% alcohol, a pH of 3.65 and the IPT of 74. Matured in 100% new oak, it has a fresh and vibrant bouquet whilst retaining the classicism of this First Growth. This is more subtle than Mouton-Rothschild or Latour, which is always the case at en primeur, yet there is a brooding intensity that draws you in as it unveils some gorgeous blackberry and graphite aromas. The palate is just superb. This has more density, more vigor, more depth and you could even argue more ambition than the 2015 Lafite-Rothschild showed last year. It gently grips the mouth with unerring focus and symmetry, just a touch of spiciness developing with a long, saline finish that lingers two minutes after the wine has departed. Lafite-Rothschild always develops and meliorates in barrel during its élevage and I suspect this will ultimately turn out to be a regal Lafite-Rothschild.
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