It's not so easy to visit Château Lafite Rothschild, despite the fact that the estate is one of the largest in the Médoc region of Bordeaux. Tours of the facilities – including the round cellar designed by Catalán architect Ricardo Bofill – must be booked well ahead and each group is limited to 15 people. There are no direct sales of wine on the property, nor is there anywhere to eat.
Lafite’s head chef, Bruno Boeuf, prepares food exclusively for the Rothschild family (currently headed up by Baron Eric de Rothschild and his artist wife, Maria-Beatrice Caracciolo Di Forino). However, Chef Boeuf is happy to share his food and wine matches on the estate’s website, along with contributions from other members of the Lafite crew.
Boeuf began working at Lafite in 1995, after stints at top Paris restaurants such as La Tour d'Argent and Le Concorde Lafayette.
A recent Mother’s Day menu designed by Boeuf included the following wines from Domaines Barons de Rothschild:
The menu reflects Boeuf’s fondness for starters and fish. “They send initial signals to the taste buds, trigger conversation, lead to the discovery of a product and its preparation, they spark questions,” he says.
But what should one eat with the estate’s most famous wine, the first-growth Château Lafite Rothschild? Boeuf offers the following possibilities for main courses:
Boeuf suggests serving the same wine with one of his chocolate desserts:
Château Lafite Rothschild's second label is Carruades de Lafite. To accompany it, Boeuf opts for lighter main courses.
When considering the Sauternes first-growth Château Rieussec, Boeuf demonstrates that sweet wines can be versatile:
Recipes suggested by other members of the Lafite team include:
According to Boeuf, “cooking is the real language of cultural exchange…and so is the wine that completes the meal.”