Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte’s rise from rundown Château to the very front rank of Bordeaux is a story that will be told long into the future, and in just 30 years the Cathiards have accomplished what would normally take generations for us mere mortals. When Daniel and Florence Cathiard, both champion skiers who competed in the Olympics, bought Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte in 1990, they invested massively in redesign and modernisation, moving towards a more biodynamic approach including abandoning mechanical harvesting for handpicking their grapes.
Nestled in Bordeaux's Pessac-Léognan region, Château Smith Haut Lafitte embodies both tradition and innovation, crafting wines that showcase the essence of this historic area. The estate's roots trace back to the 14th century, with vineyards steeped in winemaking history. Yet, it's the modern era that has propelled Château Smith Haut Lafitte to its current stature.
We’ve had the pleasure of hosting Florence & Commercial Director Ludovic Frandin at Wine Therapy Sessions, and SHL is a clear favourite amongst the wine gurus here at Honest Grapes and one that we are so excited to be able to share with you!
The vineyards, spanning 67 hectares, showcase a diverse mix of gravel and clay soils, perfectly suited for cultivating Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot. The estate's terroir, combined with meticulous care, gives rise to wines that embody the charm of Pessac-Léognan.
The winemaking approach at Château Smith Haut Lafitte balances tradition with modern methods. Hand-harvested grapes undergo careful sorting to preserve the terroir's character. Aging in oak barrels respects Bordeaux's time-honoured practices.
Sustainability is paramount to the estate. From organic farming to solar panels, Château Smith Haut Lafitte's commitment to the environment is evident, resulting in wines that mirror the harmony between nature and craftsmanship.