x
  • Country ranking ?

    5 693
  • Producer ranking ?

    6
  • Decanting time

    2h
  • When to drink

    2020-2035
  • Food Pairing

    Beef

The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's 50 best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.

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The Story

The grapes follow the same grandmother’s recipe for the cultivation of old apple trees, of which apples have more taste, a genuine flavour and a very particular length that is not only due to the variety but at the age of this apple tree.
Coming from the oldest wines of the vineyard, they bear less fruit, but offer greater complexity. Lafon-Rochet is a wine that is both simple and complex, it expresses aromas of black fruit in most vintages. There is truly a blend and features specific to Saint-Estèphe, a certain warmth and roundness, full of delicacy coming from Merlot’s grape variety.

 

Lafon-Rochet’s history dates back to the 17th century. The property was then known as the Domaine Rochet and belonged to Antoinette Guillemotes who renamed the estate Château Lafon-Rochet after her marriage with Etienne de Lafon..

Over the 150 years that followed, Etienne de Lafon’s heirs not only maintained the estate and coped with the various diseases and economic difficulties from which the vineyard suffered but also enabled Lafon-Rochet to enter the 1855 classification of the Grands crus du Médoc (the Great Growths of the Medoc).

At the dawn of the 20th century financial difficulties resurfaced and so new owners took over the Château. Thus began a long period of instability until the Tesseron family took over the estate in 1960.

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Vintage 2014

Bordeaux Vintage 2014 - is not a great vintage like 2005, 2009 or 2010 but it will be able to secure a position as one of the very good vintages of Bordeaux.

Timed usually ath the end of March and beginning of April the Primeur Week in Bordeaux is always an exciting moment as it allows a first view on the latest vintage. The huge number of wines available for tasting is impressing and one week seems almost to short. Therefore the Union de Grand Crus offers a well organised blind tasting for the press on every morning during the week. On the precendt weekend the Grand Cercle des vins de Bordeaux holds blind tastings of over 200 samples. These impressions are complemented by tastings at various Châteaux and tastings organized by the Bordeaux trade. Therefore some oft he wines can be tasted twice or even more often during this week to doublecheck on quality and style.

 

An interesting fact is the weather situation. Meterologic low pressure means that wines may close down, meanwhile meterologic high pressure presents the wines in a more open and flavourful style. This year the wheather was quite bad during the first days of the tasting week but ameliorated a lot in the second half of the week. This had an influence on the tasting notes in general which has to be considered. Another effect has been the late harvest in 2014, which shortened the time period between harvest and Primeur tastings for up to a month. A month less time for maturation has effects on the tasting results which is another aspect to consider, always keeping in mind that each tasting result remains a snap-shot and is not an absolute and final judgement.

 

2014 had an early start with budbreak around 10 days ahead of the 10 years average. End of May flowering started on the early terroirs in heterogeneous conditions, whereas the later varieties such as Cabernet-Sauvignon and Franc as well as later terroirs took advantage of a warm and sunny period beginning of June. July and August where quite cool and humid and in the second half of August the vintners prepared themselves for a vintage even worse than 2013 but at the end of August everything changed. A spledid indian summer througout September and October saved the quality. Harvest started for the white grapes started three days later than in 2012 but two weeks later than 2011. For the red grapes the harvest startet with Merlot at the end of September and ended with the Cabernets in the second half of October. The cool climate during summer provides a higher acidity, the indian summer is responsible for the right ripening.

 

The dry white wines are on a very good quality level showing crisp acidity and ripe flavours. The noble sweet white wines also take advantage of the higher acidity balancing the opulent sweetness. Therefore this vintage seems more on the elegant side. The presentation of red wines depends very much on the grape varietes and terroirs. Overall the red wines are on a higher quality level than the three previous vintages. Saint-Emilion is excellent on the plateau calcaire and shows in general very good wines.

 In Pomerol the centre of the plateau was in advantage over the surrounding areas. Fronsac was a very positive surprise for 2014. In the Médoc the southern part proved to be more heterogenous than the northern part, where especially Saint-Estèphe was homogenous and excellent. South of Bordeaux Pessac-Léognan presented a very homogenous picture of a very good quality level with outstanding wines from Haut Brion and La Mission Haut Brion.

One last observation: This vintage digests oak in a great way. The oak is even not obvious in wines with a 100% new oak barrels for maturation. Now there are roughtly twelve month to follow for the maturation of the 2014s untill the bottling in 2016. A lot can happen in this period. Let us see how the wines will present themselves after bottling, it will be a very interesting tasting again. 2014 is not a great vintage like 2005, 2009 or 2010 but it will be able to secure a position as one of the very good vintages of Bordeaux.

by Markus del Monego MW

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

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Tasting note

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Written Notes

dense and intense, excellent acidity, candied orange peel and brown sugar. Lingering aftertaste. Great effort for the vintage. 94-95p.

  • 94p

Bright ruby. Anise, blueberries, spices, some vanilla and coffee nose. Fresh acidity, ripe tannins, fresh, fruity, some spices, anise and herbs, good length. 89

  • 89p
Dark purple red with violet hue and almost black centre. Slightly smoky nose with hints of dark berries and cherries in the background. On the palate fine fruit, elegant acidity, well balanced tannins and good length.
  • 92p
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Information

Origin

Saint-Estèphe, Bordeaux

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