2010 Lafon-Rochet, St-Estèphe (Pre-Arrival)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
(66 % cabernet sauvignon, 31% merlot and 3% petit verdot; 3.75 pH; 89 IPT 89; 14% alcohol) Dark ruby-red. Deep, pure, perfumed aromas of black fruits, cured tobacco and black tea. Brawny and a bit chunky on the palate with a minty quality to the black fruit and flint flavors. Finishes with big, chewy tannins and a persistent note of cassis. Shows a creamy texture and plenty of palate weight but seems a little unrefined presently. This will need a good eight to ten years in the bottle to harmonize fully and should go on for another 20 after that. Incidentally, I sampled this wine three times and once it was vegetal and green; my guess is that it was the sample. The other two samples were superb, and are the basis for my score.
Beautifully perfumed wine, the tannins relatively gentle. It has packed weight, as well as ripe berry fruits.
Features a dark currant and blackberry coulis core, surrounded by charcoal, singed savory and light coffee notes. The solid, firm, taut finish should let this linger in the cellar for a decade. Best from 2014 through 2024.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
90+ points. I had some bottle variation with this blend of 67% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and the rest Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc. The 2010 from Lafon Rochet seemed slightly restrained and closed down on the three occasions I tasted it in Bordeaux. Dense black/ruby, it displays sweet tannin, excellent purity, fresh fruit and a very primary, almost grapy style with lots of fruit, but at the same time, a somewhat monolithic character. It should turn out fine, but it certainly needs a good 7-8 years of cellaring and should drink well for up to two decades.The property is owned by the Tesseron family and run by the newest generation, son Basile, who is converting the estate to biodynamic farming a la his uncle, Alfred Tesseron at Pontet Canet.