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Pauillac Lafite Rothschild 1996

Winemaker's Notes:

"Tasted three times since bottling, the 1996 Lafite-Rothschild is unquestionably this renowned estate's greatest wine. As I indicated last year, only 38% of the crop was deemed grand enough to be put into the final blend, which is atypically high in Cabernet Sauvignon (83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, 7% Merlot, and 3% Petit Verdot). This massive wine may be the biggest, largest-scaled Lafite I have ever tasted. It will require many years to come around, so I suspect all of us past the age of fifty might want to give serious consideration as to whether we should be laying away multiple cases of this wine. It is also the first Lafite-Rothschild to be put into a new engraved bottle (designed to prevent fraudulent imitations). The wine exhibits a thick-looking, ruby/purple color, and a knock-out nose of lead pencil, minerals, flowers, and black currant scents. Extremely powerful and full-bodied, with remarkable complexity for such a young wine, this huge Lafite is oozing with extract and richness, yet has managed to preserve its quintessentially elegant personality. This wine is even richer than it was prior to bottling. It should unquestionably last for 40-50 years. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2050. The wine of the vintage?"- Robert Parker, _Wine Advocate_ *(100 points)*Issued April 1999

Château Lafite Rothschild:
  Chateau Lafite Rothschild grew from a 180 acre winery to a massive company spanning multiple countries and producing 35,000 cases of wine annually. When Baron James de Rothschild purchased Chateau Lafite on August 8th, 1868, he was purchasing land that was already full of history. According to the 1855 classification, Chateau Lafite was ranked among the first among the First Growths,... Read more
  Chateau Lafite Rothschild grew from a 180 acre winery to a massive company spanning multiple countries and producing 35,000 cases of wine annually. When Baron James de Rothschild purchased Chateau Lafite on August 8th, 1868, he was purchasing land that was already full of history. According to the 1855 classification, Chateau Lafite was ranked among the first among the First Growths, meaning that it made the best, most expensive wine at the time. Though James de Rothschild didn’t live long enough to see his winery prosper, since he died just three months after founding the chateau, his offspring have preserved the chateau’s high standing for generations. The winery’s first major purchase took place in 1962, when they bought the dying Chateau Duhart-Milton. By that time, the once-thriving vineyard had only 42 acres to its name, but Chateau Lafite Rothschild breathed new life into the property, upgrading the equipment and replanting much of the vines. 1984 marked the start of a long chain of purchases, with Chateau Rieussec in 1984, Vina Los Vascos, in Chile, in 1988, and Chateau l’Evangile in 1990. By 1999, they began restoring the Aussieres Estate, a massive 1,500 acre plot, and in 2008 they announced plans to create a winery in Penglai, China. After all this, Baron Eric de Rothschild, the current owner of the estate, continues to look forward toward the future, with new markets, like China, just over the horizon. Read less

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"Tasted three times since bottling, the 1996 Lafite-Rothschild is unquestionably this renowned estate's greatest wine. As I indicated last year, only 38% of the crop was deemed grand enough to be put into the final blend, which is atypically high in Cabernet Sauvignon (83% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, 7% Merlot, and 3% Petit Verdot). This massive wine may be the biggest, largest-scaled Lafite I have ever tasted. It will require many years to come around, so I suspect all of us past the age of fifty might want to give serious consideration as to whether we should be laying away multiple cases of this wine. It is also the first Lafite-Rothschild to be put into a new engraved bottle (designed to prevent fraudulent imitations). The wine exhibits a thick-looking, ruby/purple color, and a knock-out nose of lead pencil, minerals, flowers, and black currant scents. Extremely powerful and full-bodied, with remarkable complexity for such a young wine, this huge Lafite is oozing with extract and richness, yet has managed to preserve its quintessentially elegant personality. This wine is even richer than it was prior to bottling. It should unquestionably last for 40-50 years. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2050. The wine of the vintage?"- Robert Parker, _Wine Advocate_ *(100 points)*Issued April 1999

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