Bibendum Wine said it worked with Bordeaux-based negociant Compagnie Médocaine to recruit several leading châteaux and estate owners for the project, including:
- Baron Philippe de Rothschild, owner of Mouton Rothschild, d’Armhailac and Clerc Milon;
- Cruse & Lorenzetti families, owners of Pédesclaux and d’Issan;
- Cos d’Estournel, owned by Michel Reybier.
More estates were expected to join, said Bibendum, adding that it wanted to ‘re-energise’ sales of top Bordeaux wines in the UK on-trade.
The move could lead to more vintages from top Bordeaux estates – sourced direct from estate cellars – on wine lists at high-end restaurants and venues.
Mouton Rothschild 2004, Cos d’Estournel 2008 and d’Issan 2007 were among the wines initially included in the project.
Bibendum said the scheme would allow on-trade customers to buy ex-cellar Bordeaux wines at ‘competitive market prices’. It added that it would use a closer relationship with châteaux to run events and organise trade visits to the French region.
‘With the majority of Bordeaux Cru Classé wines bought en primeur, we really wanted to facilitate better working relationships between the châteaux and the restaurants their wines are sold in,’ said Bibendum’s CEO, Michael Saunders.
He told Decanter.com that it was an opportunity for Bordeaux estates to better understand where their wines are being sold and who buys them.
He said the plan, hatched alongside Georges Haushalter, MD of Compagnie Médocaine, has been several years in the making.
A Cos d’Estournel spokesperson said the estate was delighted to be involved. ‘The aim of this project is to celebrate the wines of Cos d’Estournel and continue to grow our relationship with a targeted group of influencers, who are knowledgeable and passionate about Bordeaux wines.’
Wines that will be initially available under the scheme are:
Baron Philippe de Rothschild
- Château Mouton Rothschild 2004
- Château d’Armailhac 2006 and 2010
- Château Clerc Milon 2004
- Pastourelle de Clerc Milon 2012
Cruse & Lorenzetti families
- Château Pédesclaux 2014
- Château d’Issan 2007
- Château Cos d’Estournel 2008
- Château Cos d’Estournel blanc 2015
- Goulée rouge by Cos d’Estournel 2016
- Pagodes de Cos 2012