Ch. Smith Haut Lafitte (0.375 L)
WA: Kudos to the Cathiard family, who acquired this once under-performing estate in 1990. They have spared no expense or effort in producing wines (both red and white) that are among the finest in Bordeaux in virtually every vintage. The 2001 red may not have as much power as the 2000, but it is very close in quality. A blend of 53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, and 13% Cabernet Franc, it was macerated for four weeks, enjoyed malolactic in barrel as well as stirring of the lees, and was bottled with minimal clarification. This elegant, stylish, deep ruby/purple-colored effort reveals notes of smoke, graphite, and red as well as black fruits in its perfumed, nicely evolved bouquet. With sweet flavors, medium body, outstanding concentration, and impressive purity, this finely-etched Pessac-Leognan should hit its peak in 4-5 years, and drink well over the following 12-14+.
WA / RP: 92