Michel Tesseron’s care for his vines approaches organic principals and his labours over the six years since he took control of Lafon Rochet have consistently yielded one of the best value wines in the Médoc. The wine is deep garnet in colour, with a beautifully feminine nose of ripe plum and blackcurrant, with a background of fine minerally terroir; lush and seductive with the slightest sign of over extraction. Pure, clean blackberry fruit, with red fruit also, supple, long and balanced. A great success.
Basil Tesseron’s 4th growth Lafon Rochet, which neighbours Chateau Lafite, is undertaking several bold changes. Superstar consultant Denis Dubourdieu has been drafted in to join Lucus Leclercq, the new technical director, previously at Cheval Blanc and Domaine Romanee Conti. Half of the vineyards are now being farmed bio-dynamically.
A part of St-Estèphe is separated from Pauillac's Lafite only by a stream.Though St-Estèphe contains some gravel, it is largely renowned for the high clay content of its soils compared with other vineyards on the left bank. These wetter cooler soils favour the Merlot, hence the relatively large proportion of plantings compared neighbouring communes, though Cabernet Sauvignon dominates. The cool soils means the grapes are later ripeing and tend to have high acidities, archetypal St Estèphe is a strong-willed, tannic structured wine to be laid down. The stars of St-Estèphe are Montrose, Cos d’Estournel and Calon-Segur, whilst Haut Marbuzet and Lafon Rochet have been producing excellent value wines over the last few years.