The 2006 Lafleur, which I had not tasted from bottle prior to this visit, merits 95 points. One of the vintate's most brilliant wines, this blend of 61% Merlot and 39% Cabernet Franc is neither as dense nor complete as the 2008, but it is structured, closed, and austere (as are many 2006s at present). It reveals a plum/purple color along with a beautifully sweet nose of black and red fruits intermixed with incense as well as a steely/iron-like smell. More open on the palate than the 2008, with more obvious spice and earthy undertones, this powerful Lafleur should be drinkable in 5-7 years, and will last for three decades. The tiny Lafleur vineyard, which was harvested between October 8-14, produced a wine with an atypically high percentage of Cabernet Franc. Proprietor Guinadeau stated that the Cabernet Franc was among the finest he had ever harvested.
|Score: 95||Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (182), April 2009|
A terrific example of Lafleur, the 2006 (61% Merlot and 39% Cabernet Franc) may be as good as their brilliant 2005. From yields of 28-32 hectoliters per hectare and a strict selection, proprietor Jacques Guinadeau used most of the young vine production in Lafleur’s second wine, Les Pensees, so there are only 1,000 or so cases of 2006 Lafleur. A noteworthy success, it boasts a deep ruby/purple color as well as a sumptuous bouquet of black cherries, kirsch liqueur, licorice, and minerals, sweet tannin, and a medium to full-bodied style. It is reminiscent of a richer, more bulked up, concentrated version of the 1999 or 1995. The 2006 will require a decade of cellaring, and should keep for four decades or more.
|Score: 93/95+||Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (170), April 2007|
Tasted at the château and then blind at Farr Vintners' tasting, the 2006 Lafleur is a vintage that I have not tasted for a few years. It has a well-defined bouquet with kirsch, strawberry, touches of melted tar and that hint of cooked meat that I picked up on out of barrel. The palate is medium-bodied with slightly coarse tannin on the entry, tarry black fruit, cohesive in the mouth with a touch of black pepper that leads to a conservative finish, which feels just a little austere at the moment. It is an impressive Lafleur from Jacques Guinaudeau, even if I would not place it within the top tier of vintages that he has overseen with his son Baptiste in recent years.
|Score: 93||Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, May 2016|
Compared to the previous two Lafleur’s, this is a difficult wine to get to grips with. A dense, masculine nose with blackberry, hedgerow and a touch of cooked meats. The palate is bashful at first, reluctantly revealing a sinewy, masculine structure with tobacco, spice, a touch of ginger. Very tight and backward, very unresolved especially compared to the likes of VCC sampled afterwards. Slightly disjointed on the finish, although there are the elements here to make a superlative wine. Unlike the 2004 and 2005, this is just too early to judge and so a more realistic assessment should be make next year. It is a cliché, but wait and see. Tasted April 2007.
|Score: 91/93+||Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, April 2007|
This starts off very slow, then opens to violet and lilac, with crushed raspberry and strawberry. Full-bodied, with racy, intense acidity and tannins. Powerful and layered, with wonderful, subtle fruit and a long finish. Best after 2015.
|Score: 93||James Suckling, WineSpectator.com, May 2009|
Starts off slow, then cascades like a waterfall. Full and superlong, this is structured and racy. Tight and in reserve. A classic beauty for the vintage.
|Score: 95/100||James Suckling, WineSpectator.com, March 2007|
70% of the crop had to be treated against botrytis, so that premature picking could be avoided. The rain ran off the unworked hard ground in September and so didn’t dilute the berries. 61% Merlot, 39% Cabernet Franc. Assemblage in December 06.
Very dark glowing crimson. Wild flowers and herbs on the nose - not desperately concentrated. Fresh start and pretty brutal. Much more restrained than the Pensées. Neat tight structure. Very nervy and fine tannins. Racy nervy wine in which the acidity is more pronounced than in the Pensées at the moment.
|Score: 17.5+||Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2007|
Good full, deep red. Brooding aromas of black cherry, cherry pit and licorice, plus a note that reminded me of a liqueur of flowers. Sweet, chewy and very ripe, but with restraint and focus to the youthful, mineral-driven flavors of dark fruits, licorice and pepper. This shows the cooler, medicinal cast of a classic young Lafleur and although almost surprisingly silky now, this really calls for extended cellaring.
|Score: 93+||Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar, May 2009|
Good red-ruby. Pungent aromas of kirsch, violet, black olive, menthol and mint. Rich, sweet and suave, with a slightly medicinal cast to the seriously concentrated dark fruit flavors. This vibrant wine coats the entire mouth and builds impressively on the back half, where the big, broad tannins are nicely buffered by fruit. A splendid showing today.
|Score: 92/94||Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar (132), June 2007|