About the Wine
Since 1960 Chateau Lafon Rochet has been owned by the Tesseron family. The family has received international fame from their Cognac label, Tesseron, and the skyrocketing quality around their other Chateau, Pontet Canet. Although Lafon Rochet is not to be outshined by Pontet Canet, few produce wine on the same level, and none do it for this price as Lafon Rochet.
At Lafon-Rochet, 41 hectares of vines cover two ridges of Saint-Estephe. The soil is composed of gravel and clay. On one hand, the gravel provides excellent natural drainage. On the other, the clay regulates the water flow and provides the vines with the necessary quantities.
The vineyard is mostly planted with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with small Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot plots, which provide pleasant surprises for some vintages. The youngest vines for this “Great Wine” are at least 35 years old; the oldest vines, date as far back as 1938. The old vines produce less fruit but add great complexity to the wines. One set to music, these grape varieties make up the estate’s wines’ score.
2020 was a great year for Bordeaux. Vinous Media blessed this year with a 97-point review and said, "Two thousand-twenty is an exceptional vintage for Bordeaux, certainly the best in the 2018-2020 trilogy. Quality is very high”
Aging: 12 months in barriques.
Tasting Notes: 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
See Critical Reviews for detailed tasting notes.
The 2020 Lafon-Rochet is fabulous. The aromatics along are dazzling. Gracious and yet effusive, with tons of nuance, the 2020 dazzles from start to finish. Inky dark fruit, new leather, spice, lavender and menthol fill the room with soaring intensity. Silky, elegant and so pure, Lafon-Rochet is shaping up to be one of the real under the radar gems of 2020. It's a terrific effort from Basile Tesseron. Don't miss it. The 2020 Lafon-Rochet represents the essence of classicism in Bordeaux. Medium in body and finely-cut, Lafon-Rochet is one of the classiest, more refined Saint-Estèphes readers will come across. Dark fruit, earthiness, lavender, licorice, menthol and cloves add nuance, but it is the wine's balance and vibrancy that impress most. Give the tannins a few years to melt away. Superb. Best after 2030.~96 Vinous Media
Richly structured, powered by dark tannins and rich blackberry fruits, this estate has produced a very fine wine this vintage. The structure is considerable while keeping fruitiness and fine acidity in focus. The wine will certainly age well. ~95 Wine Enthusiast
I loved the 2020 Château Lafon-Rochet, a rich, powerful, concentrated Saint-Estèphe that stays beautifully balanced and elegant. Lots of pure cassis and darker currant fruits as well as tobacco, chocolate, and damp herb notes define the nose, and it's medium to full-bodied, with plenty of mid-palate depth, building tannins, and a great finish. It's going to take 7-8 years to hit the early stages of maturity, but it's a brilliant wine. The blend is 61% Cabernet Sauvignon, 33% Merlot, and the rest Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, with an alcohol of 13.5 and a pH of 3.68. Tasted twice. ~93-95 Jeb Dunnuck
Attractive, well-paced fruits, plenty of clarity to the flavours, together with a feeling of linearity to the tannins. Austerity through the mid-palate constrains the brambled cassis fruit, but things build back up again and this is a measured, successful wine that will age well. 3% Petit Verdot completes the blend. First year with Eric Boissenot accompanying Jean-Claude Berrouet as consultants. ~93 Decanter
Subtle dried spices and berries with chocolate undertones. It’s medium-bodied with fine tannins and a savory finish. Fresh and bright. From organically grown grapes.~91 James Suckling
The 2020 Lafon-Rochet opens in the glass with aromas of cassis, plums and licorice, followed by a medium to full-bodied, deep palate with good concentration, lively acids and plenty of powdery structuring tannin that asserts itself on the finish. This, too, is more structured than its 2019 counterpart and will require a bit of patience. Best after 2025. ~91 Robert Parker