Words, wise or otherwise, about wine

Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc 1997

Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc 1997

Bordeaux is of course famous for its red wines but the region also makes some lesser known, superb white wines. These white wines are normally made from a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon while a splash of Muscadelle and other minor varieties can also be thrown in to the mix. 15 years can be considered to be significant ageing for a Bordeaux Blanc, with 10 years usually regarded as about right for the wines of Pessac-Leognan.

Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc is almost all Sauvignon Blanc but this vintage had 5% Semillon and 5% Sauvignon Gris  and received a fair bit of oak contact, probably fermented and aged in new oak.

Oak a touch dominant initially but doesn’t overpower the delicate Sauvignon Blanc and richly developed Semillon in the blend. Citrus, lemon and lanolin in a delightful interplay with the smoky oak which seems to integrate much better in 30 minutes or so. This is well advanced along the maturity path and probably on the way down but is delicious right now. 91pts

Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte


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