1994 Lafite Rothschild, Pauillac

SKU #199412 93 points Wine Spectator

 *Cellar Selection and Top 100 Wines of 1997* A luscious Lafite that is silky and elegant with layers of wonderful violet, berry, cherry and chocolate flavors. It's full-bodied, with racy, refined tannins and good length. Drinkable now, but best from 1999 and through another decade.  (1/1997)

90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Because Lafite-Rothschild (1) tends to lack the weight of many wines of the northern Medoc, and (2) is never a flashy, ostentatious style of wine, it is often more difficult to evaluate when young than some of its neighbors. Made from nearly 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, this dark ruby/purple-colored wine is stubbornly backward, unappealing, and severe and astringent on the palate. There is plenty of weight, and the wine possesses admirable purity, with no suggestion of herbaceousness or underripe fruit, but the wine's personality refuses to be coaxed from the glass. The 1994 Lafite may turn out to be austere and disappointing flavor-wise, but possesses a fabulous set of aromatics (does that sound reminiscent of the 1961, another Lafite that was primarily Cabernet Sauvignon?). I am not giving up on this wine, but purchasers should be willing to wait 15-20 years before pulling a cork. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2030. (RP)  (2/1997)

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Price: $599.99

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Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the M├ędoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.


- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.


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Specific Appellation:


- Pauillac is probably the most famous village in Bordeaux. Located between St. Julien and St. Estephe, it has more of the top ranked chateau than the other four appellations of the Haut Medoc. This area has three of the five premier cru classe wineries: Lafite Rothschild, Latour, and Mouton Rothschild. There are two of the top second-growths (Pichon Lalande and Pichon Baron) as well as several outstanding fourth and fifth-growth chateaux including Lynch Bages. Because of the gravely soils and great drainage, Pauillac has the ideal conditions to grow great Cabernet Sauvignon. The wines from this village are some of the longest-lived in Bordeaux.