Chateau Margaux gets experimental

Mar 09, 12 Chateau Margaux gets experimental

Posted by in Biodynamic wine, France

If you are one of the 5 First Growths of Bordeaux (Ch. Margaux, Ch. Lafite Rothschild, Ch. Latour, Ch. Haut-Brion and lastly, Ch. Mouton Rothschild), you might think you could rest on your laurels, not give a fig for any new fangled advancements and just continue to produce wine the way it’s always been done. I mean, the first classification was done in 1855 and only one chateau has been added since then (Mouton Rothschild), and that was back in the 1970’s. You could do that but if you’re Chateau Margaux you won’t or rather, you don’t. That’s not to say the others are not also innovating but Ch. Margaux is the first to go public with their experimental findings.  Paul Pontallier, Managing Director and winemaker of Ch. Margaux was in town recently to give us a sneak peek into the inner workings of Ch. Margaux and how they are striving to maintain their reputation as one of the best wines of Bordeaux. He wants the world to know that Margaux is a forward thinking chateau and that they are looking to the wine business of the future, and the younger generation that will not only carry on the traditions but also build upon and improve what has gone before them. According to Paul, there is a plenty of experimentation and research going on in Bordeaux. He stressed however, that they themselves are not making anything new but rather in an organized way, they started these experiments because he does envisage change at some point in the future and his goal is to make the best possible wine and remain the best possible wine now and for future generations. So what are they up to? Pulling back the curtain of the great and mighty Oz (as in Wizard, not Clarke) we find, biodynamic wine! Let me explain first that the wines we tasted are not the ones that go into the first growth but are distinct plots that they are using on the estate...

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Screwcaps- what do you do with’em?

The other night at the Guanabara wine tasting a fellow asked me what I thought of screwcaps. More precisely, what did I think the server should do with the screwcap after the bottle has been opened? I did an informal survey amongst the bloggers around the table and the funniest but true comment came from Foodrambler, who said that when the server unscrewed the cap, it made her feel like a moron, like she couldn’t even unscrew a bottlecap. If you really ARE a moron, the NZ Screwcap Wine Seal Initiative has step by step instructions to help you figure it out. I can see where she’s coming from but it seems a bit abrupt for the waiter to just drop the bottle off and walk away. Or maybe I’m being old-fashioned. I mean, nowadays, who’s got time for such formalities and outdated rituals? The whole point of showing and leaving the cork on the table was to prevent unscrupulous restauranteurs in Paris, back in the day, from substituting cheap plonk for the expensive stuff. The cork was presented so that the diner could inspect it for any tampering and to confirm that it had actually come from the vineyard that was on the label (not to sniff it). The producers were more then happy to print their names on the cork to prevent themselves from being ripped off as well. Nowadays we don’t really have to worry about that, well, the recent Italian Barolo scandal notwithstanding, but what to do with the screwcap? I think that the screwcap should be treated like the foil, take it away as soon as the bottle is open. Others seem to think it should be left on the table, much like the cork. And others probably have more important things to do then ponder what to do with the screwcap once the bottle is open! Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPocketRedditGoogleTumblrEmailPrintPinterestLike this:Like...

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