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Back to old school Lafite after a few more years of early accessibility… Very earthy, saline, nori and graphite character, but fruit very quiet. Very dense palate, real mid palate drive and energy within the context of the vintage, with black and red cherry fruits, fresh tobacco, exotic fruit, citrus, spice. This is a classic Lafite which you feel will gain in weight but without sacrificing its terroir authenticity. A very fine example of the vintage.
A brilliant wine that shares some similarities with the formidable 1996, the 2021 Lafite Rothschild wafts from the glass with inviting aromas of dark berries, cigar box, loamy soil, black truffle and violets. Medium to full-bodied, deep and layered, it's rich and concentrated, with beautifully powdery tannins, lively acids and a long, saline finish. Of course, this isn't as dramatic as the 2020 or 2019 out of the gates, but the 2021 is a brilliant success in its own right. What's more, its structure and balance mean that it is likely to prove almost immortal. It's a blend of 96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Merlot and 1% Petit Verdot, which is one of the all-time highest percentages of Cabernet Sauvignon chez Lafite.
William Kelley, April 2022
The 2021 Lafite-Rothschild, which was aged in 90% new oak, has a deep, almost opaque hue. This has quite an arresting bouquet with dense blackberry, sous-bois and pencil box scents, quintessential Lafite aromas with nuanced floral scents surfacing with time. The palate is medium-bodied, though with more weight than you would expect given the growing season. The Cabernet Sauvignon imparts graphite and almost briny elements into the aromatic profile. Sapid and classic in style, head winemaker Eric Kohler suggests that it is a return to the style of Lafite-Rothschild of the nineties in terms of freshness. I concur. Neal Martin, Vinous, May 2022
Polished and refined with a firm, fine and linear tannin structure. Harmonious. Perfumed violets, roses and subtle licorice. All in balance here, with precise layers of black fruit, minerals and pencil lead. Rather seamless. Firm, yet fine and sleek to the end. Very classy. Fine-velvet texture. 96% cabernet sauvignon, 3% merlot and 1% petit verdot.
Deep crimson hue. Customary elegance rather than power. Perfumed nose, attractive fruit and a surprising density of tannin (15% press wine to bolster the structure). Quite discreet and measured in its form but good length and should improve further in bottle. (JL) 12.6%
Drink 2030 – 2050
Jancisrobinson.com, May 2022
The 2021 Lafite-Rothschild casts an imposing presence. Black fruit, sage, menthol, licorice and incense give Lafite its dark, almost somber, personality. Cabernet Sauvignon is dialed up, and that very much comes through in the wine's flavor profile and overall feel. The tannins are quite prominent at this stage. In some ways, the 2021 reminds me of the 1996, but with the greater delineation found in today's wines. I can't wait to see how it ages. The 2021 is one of the stars of the Left Bank. Its longevity will ultimately be dictated by storage conditions more than anything having to do with the wine itself.
Antonio Galloni, Vinous, May 2022
Deep in colour, has grip and presence. Loganberry, blueberry, wet stones, hawthorn, forest floor, this is a long-ageing Lafite, not one that I would rush to open. It delivers tannic power from beginning to end, with density and juice and length, a reminder that Lafite manages to perform strongly in so many different styles of vintage. Delivering right at the very top of Pauillac. 1st year organic conversion. 90% new oak. No frost at the estate, yields of 34hl/h, harvest September 22 to October 8. 40% 1st wine.
Jane Anson, Inside Bordeaux, May 2022
Grainy, introverted, tense, and monastically composed, this is a classic Lafite stance on the palate, and then something rather enchanting occurs. No matter how much it tried to keep a straight face and furrowed brow, Lafite cannot hide the incredible purity of Cabernet fruit, nor can it stop the flavours from seeming extraordinarily appealing at this extremely young age.
Lafite is usually a challenge to taste in its youth, but the 2021 vintage is a positive pleasure. In addition, Lafite is generally a wine that takes 20 years to open and blossom and a further 20 to start to gather pace.
But it appears that much of the fruit charm of this stunning young wine is already on display, but that is not to say that it lacks anything in the longevity stakes. There is impressive openness and charm coupled with discreet sensuality and fragrance, and this all adds up to make a thrilling, (relatively) forward, and mesmerisingly flattering vintage that I can guarantee everyone will fall for. You will note that Cabernet forms a mighty 96% of this blend and, in the end, only half a vat of Merlot from Pointon Gravette, a plot on the legendary Carruades plateau, went into this wine. This is further proof of how captivating, intriguing and unique 2021 is for this famous estate.
The 2021 Lafite Rothschild is a blend of 96% CS, 3% Merlot, and 1% Petit Verdot. Deep garnet-purple colored, it needs a lot of swirling to shake loose notions of ripe blackcurrants, fresh blackberries, and black raspberries, followed by hints of cedar, graphite, cloves, and cast-iron pan with a waft of roses. Light to medium-bodied, the palate delivers intensely perfumed black fruits with a floral and herbal undercurrent textured by firm, finely grained tannins, and featuring well-integrated acidity, finishing on a lingering fragrant earth note. This should be one of the most long-lived wines of the vintage, with cellaring potential of 40+ years. Yields came in at 33 hl/ha and the wine has a pH of 3.9.
Lisa Perrotti-Brown, May 2022