chateau smith haut lafitte, blanc, pessac-leognan 2018
Already very full in feel, with alluring tangerine, verbena, orange blossom, bitter almond and brioche notes. Long and lush, this is coming together in a hurry and is set to be one of the showier wines of the vintage.
The grand vin is the 2018 Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc, which is mostly Sauvignon Blanc with 5% each of Sémillon and Sauvignon Gris, that’s being brought up in 50% new French oak. Deeper, richer, yet still racy and vibrant, it has gorgeous notes of tart pineapple, crushed citrus, salty minerality, and white flowers. Rich, concentrated, medium to full-bodied, it's unquestionably one of the whites of the vintage. Barrel Sample: 96-98.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The Smith Haut Lafitte 2018 Blanc is composed of 90% Sauvignon Blanc, 5% Sémillon and 5% Sauvignon Gris, aging in 50% new oak barriques. It features intense scents of lime leaves, pink grapefruit, white peaches and green mango with hints of yuzu, lemon meringue pie, crushed rocks and coriander seed. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is laden with energetic citrus and stone fruit layers, with a satiny texture and bold freshness, finishing long and mineral laced.
This is very dense and deep with glorious fruit and a creamy textured, very long finish. A superb young white. Energetic yet textured. Lots of sliced-lemon, lime and apple character with some cream. Top.
This well-rounded wine offers flavors of ripe yellow fruit, apple and pear, with bright acidity to balance. The texture, concentration and intensity linger on the finish. The wine will age well.
You can feel a touch more ripeness here than in some years but they have beautifully captured flavours of fleshy yellow pears, freshly cut herbs and some slate and saline minerality. This should manage a long life and I am surprised here, as with a few whites this year, by the grip and sense of fun in the wine. It's not quite the 2017 again, but has its own claim for attention. 50% new oak. Technical director Fabien Teitgen said he started picking early because he was worried about losing acidity, but found it was actually much better than expected. 28hl/ha yield. Drinking Window 2022 - 2036. Barrel Sample: 94