Château Smith Haut Lafitte is a Bordeaux winery with a rich history dating back to the fourteenth century. However, it is the past 30 years that have seen the estate flourish under the ownership of former French Olympic skier Daniel Cathiard and his wife Florence. The couple has embraced biodynamic farming practices and transformed the château into a luxurious destination.
The estate’s Grand Cru Classé white and red Bordeaux blends are the result of farming practices that enhance biodiversity, minimize carbon footprint, and produce complex wines. The vineyards are home to shire horses, orchards, beehives, and woodland, all cultivated to enhance the ecosystem.
The Cathiards’ daughters, Mathilde and Alice, have also joined the family business. Mathilde uses the estate’s grape seeds and vine cuttings for her beauty brand, Caudalie, while Alice manages two hotels, including the five-star Les Sources de Caudalie located in the vineyards. The hotel features a two-Michelin starred restaurant, a countryside inn, a spa offering Caudalie Vinothérapie, and a range of amenities such as a wine bar, pool, gym, sauna, tennis court, and more.
Visitors can also explore the tasting room in the orangery, which houses the estate’s most precious collection of bottles dating back to the nineteenth century. The château produces red and white blends using the seven Bordeaux grape varieties, farmed under biodynamic principles with technological assistance. The grapes are monitored by satellite image to determine the optimal time for hand-harvesting, and are picked in batches according to each plot’s progress.
In addition, the château has its own cooperage, allowing the team to control oak impact down to the minutest degree. Overall, Château Smith Haut Lafitte is a must-visit destination for wine lovers and those seeking a luxurious retreat in the heart of the Bordeaux vineyards