Beautiful, rich and still extremely young, this is Lafite at its gulpable, elegant, sculpted, age-defying best. Deeply-spiced cassis notes are joined by touches of cedar - the result of a dry year that saw one of the earliest harvests since 1898. The grapes were picked with high alcohol and ripe tannins and they have absolutely lasted, and will continue to do so. The tannins are cradling the fruit, barely perceptible and yet still fully in control. (JA)
Château Lafite-Rothschild Pauillac 1989: I have never been a huge fan of this Lafite but it seems to be coming into its own now. It's a wine with a character of cloves and berries with hints plums. It shows loads of potpourri. Roses too. Full and so balanced. Tight and youthful. The winemaker at Lafite says that when he wants to show someone a perfect example of Pauillac this is the Lafite he pours. Maybe he is right?
Tasted from magnum at Bordeaux Index, this is another confirmation that the 1989 is the Lafite to go for if choosing between 1988, 1989 and 1990. Here it has a typical Lafite nose with cedar, graphite and not so much menthol this time, but traces of wild mint. It blossoms with aeration. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannins and a sense of solidity that I find missing in the 1988 or 1990. It has a sense of femininity and grace: an undercurrent of sous-bois, bay leaf and a touch of sandalwood. Harmonious with good length, I feel that the 1989 is at its peak right at this very moment. Tasted December 2012. (NM, Wine Journal)
Subtle, yet rich and decadent, offering meat, sweet berry and fresh leather on the nose. Full and very soft, with velvety tannins and a long, fruity finish. This has so much ripe fruit. Reserved and firm, this is turning to a very fine and shy Lafite. This is fresh and structured, but still holding back. I wouldn't wait, though.--'89/'99 Bordeaux blind retrospective (2009). (JS, Web Only-2010)
I find that the 1989 has more personality than the 1990 Lafite. The palate is supple and rounded in the mouth, a sense of warmth here although not complex and I would prefer more tension on the finish as it delivers allspice, mulberry and sage on the aftertaste. I wonder where this will go? At the moment it is difficult to see: heading down a cul-de-sac or Route 66? Tasted at the Lafite-Rothschild dinner at Amuse Bouche in Hong Kong and then blind at the Lafite-Rothschild 150th anniversary dinner at the property. (NM
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