Château Lafite Rothschild
Château Lafite Rothschild, a 112-hectare vineyard, is divided into three parts: the hills surrounding the château, the adjacent Carruades plateau and 4.5 hectares in nearby Saint Estèphe. The soil, consisting of fine gravel, aeolian sand and limestone, includes vines dating back to 1886. Only vines older than 10 years are used for the “Grand Vin”.
Before the current namesake Baron James de Rothschild became the owner of the château, there were the requisite Dutch influences. In 1797, the Dutchman Jan de Witt purchased the château. However, de Witt’s ownership was short-lived; he sold the château financially to Dutch merchants Baron Jan Arend de Vos Van Steenwijk, Jan Willem Berg and Johan Goll van Franckenstein.
De Rothschild family
The vineyard is still owned by the De Rothschild family. In 1975 Baron Eric de Rothschild took over from his uncle Baron Élie. Since 1962, a team led by technical director Eric Kohler has been running Château Lafite Rothschild, along with nearby Château Duhart-Milon. Kohler is supported by oenologist and winemaker Christophe Congé and vineyard manager Louis Caillard.
Elegance through broad flavors
Château Lafite Rothschild produces an extremely elegant wine with broad flavors. The freshness of dark red fruit is accompanied by notes of cedar, blackcurrant, tobacco, truffle, pencil sharpening and spice. The so-called “floral” in the bouquet makes the Lafite the most feminine wine among the five Premier Grand Cru’s. In addition to the “Grand Vin,” a second of the wine is sold under the label “Carruades de Lafite,” named after the adjacent plateau.
French wine and American presidents have been a good match for years. Former President Thomas Jefferson went to France to research ways to improve wine processes America. His eye fell on the wines of Château Lafite Rothschild in the process. He remained a great lover and frequent guest of the estate until his death.