Another exceptional vintage at Lafleur, with great concentration and intensity, holding back just enough to keep you guessing. The wine is concentrated but creamy and definitely reminiscent of 2016 but with a touch more velvet to the tannins and unlikely to close down as tightly or for as long. Deep dark chocolate and liquorice notes gently layer up next to succulent black fruits and softer floral notes with the more architectural texture of slate doing its bit to add poise and precision. Normal yields were recorded as there was no mildew but being Lafleur they don't talk in hl/ha but express that as around 3/4 of a bottle per vine!! Drinking Window 2026 - 2044
The 2018 Lafleur is a blend of 54% Cabernet Franc harvested on October 1 and 4, with 46% Merlot harvested September 12 and 15. Deep garnet-purple colored, it rocks up charged with energetic iron ore, crushed rocks and scorched earth notes over a core of blueberry compote, Morello cherries, black raspberries and stewed plums plus suggestions of violets, menthol and cardamom. Full-bodied, powerful, opulent and incredibly seductive, the palate is mind blowing with its through-the-roof velvety tannins and bright freshness supporting layer upon drop-dead gorgeous layer of fragrant black fruits, mineral notions and earth, finishing epically long and perfumed.
The sweetness of fruit in the center palate is incredible with a ripe-plum and currant undertone. Very aromatic already. Full-bodied, tight and compressed with a tannin quality that folds beautifully into the wine. Incredible finish. Such, such power with finesse. Tight but glorious at this stage.
54% Bouchet (local clone of Cabernet Franc, also known as Bouchet Franc or Gros Bouchet), 46% Merlot. Barrel sample. Darkest crimson. Both spicy and creamy on the nose, and with a cool stony fragrance as well as the delicate but focused black fruits. Darker fruited than many vintages. Silky and papery finesse with dark-red fruit purity and so much charm and finesse in the texture. A touch peppery, very dry, almost chalky, so light and dancing and very long. Open but deceptively so because there is huge ageing potential and depth here. Incredibly lithe. Unique in Bordeaux in its style, finesse and hidden concentration. (JH) Drink 2028-2043