Pessac-Léognan - Chateau Smith-Haut-Lafite
Château Smith Haut Lafitte is a Bordeaux wine from the Pessac-Léognan appellation, ranked among the Crus Classés for red wine in the Classification of Graves wine of 1953 and 1959.
The estate originates in the 14th century with the house of Verrier Du Boscq who planted vines on a gravelly plateau named Lafitte already in 1365. In 1720 it was bought by the Scotsman Georges Smith who added his name to the lieu-dit, and who built the manor house of the property. The Louis Eschenauer company bought estate in 1958, after having already distributed the wine from the early 20th century. In 1990, Daniel Cathiard bought Smith Haut Lafitte and embarked on an investment programme, including the building of a new cellar.
Prior to the arrival of the Cathiard family, Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte was not known for producing high quality wine. It took a decade of hard work and serious investments before things began turning around here. But starting in 2000, the wines clearly started showing a lot of improvement, with further, noticeable jumps in quality in 2005, 2008 and again in 2009, and in my eyes, once again 2010! You can add 2015 and 2016 to that growing list of top vintages as well.
The vineyard area consists of 67 hectares (170 acres), 56 hectares of which are planted with grape varieties of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc. The remaining 11 hectares are cultivated with white varieties of 90% Sauvignon blanc, 5% Sémillon and 5% Sauvignon gris.
The Grand vin, Château Smith Haut Lafitte, is annually produced in 10,000 cases of the red wine and 2,500 cases of the dry white. The second wine, Les Hauts de Smith, has a production of 5,500 cases, and exists in red, white and rosé versions. The rosé is produced as a Bordeaux AOC. There is an alternative second wine called Le Petit Haut Lafitte produced exclusively as a red wine with a higher mix of Cabernet Grapes for a more left bank feel - this second wine is steadily gaining popularity