2011 Lafite Rothschild, Pauillac (Pre-Arrival)
A powerful wine with dark and dry tannins. It has a great depth of fruit flavor, with immense and concentrated weight, and a structure that is for long-term aging.
Still tightly wound and very restrained, but there's a serious well of black plum and macerated currant fruit in reserve, held behind substantial but well-ripened tannins and a strong chalk and iron note. There's a nice austerity to the very driven mineral finish. Tasted non-blind.
A bit chewy but shows an impressive intensity of spice, sweet tobacco, and currant character. Full, dense and structured. Muscular for the vintage for Lafite. Tobacco box aftertaste. Some wet earth too.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
A blend of 80% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Merlot (harvested between September 3-21), the 2011 Lafite Rothschild came in at 12.6% natural alcohol (considerably lower than in 2010 and 2009). Exhibiting a deep ruby/purple color, lots of crushed rock, red and black currant, forest floor and underbrush characteristics, moderate tannin and medium body, it is built somewhat along the lines of the 1999 and 2001. It should be a 20- to 25-year wine, but it is not at the level of the 2008, 2009 and 2010. Fresh acids give the wine a somewhat more clipped feeling than most great Lafites have exhibited. Nevertheless, there is a lot of freshness and vibrancy to this vintage.
** 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot. Red berry aromas. Deep and complex. This elegant wine got better after some airing. A step behind 2009 and 2010, but at a better price. Trey: Dark color. Intense on the nose. Tightly wound, deep and super concentrated.