Château Lafite-Rothschild: The Lafite Phenomenon

Sadly no modern profile of Château Lafite-Rothschild would be complete without some mention of the Lafite phenomenon, by which I mean the staggering escalation in prices the wines of this estate have seen in the early years of the 21st century. Much of the driving force behind this has been Asian demand for the wine, although unusually the obsession initially focused on the second wine, Carruades de Lafite, rather than the grand vin.

Château Lafite-Rothschild

Within a few years what was once little more than a decent and perhaps decent-value deuxième vin became vinous hot property; increasing in value more then ten-fold. And with the Asian market seemingly hoovering up every last bottle, many merchants couldn’t get enough of it. Leading UK broker Farr Vintners even put out a call on their blog for anyone with bottles to sell to get in touch; one friend of mine that took the invitation was offered £200 per bottle, for wines he had acquired only a few years before at a price of less than £20 each.

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