Having joined Domaine Barons de Rothschild in 1999, Congé has since held the role of oenologist and wine operations manager across Château Lafite Rothschild and Château Duhart Milon for over 22 years. He has now been appointed MD of Saint-Estèphe fourth growth Château Lafon-Rochet. He takes on his new role with immediate effect.
Congé will work closely with Emmanuel Cruse, director of Vignobles Cruse-Lorenzetti, which acquired Château Lafon-Rochet from the Tesseron family last year.
The appointment of Congé marks the first change implemented by Vignobles Cruse-Lorenzetti since it acquired the property.
Congé takes over from Basile Tesseron, previous MD and owner alongside his family, who completed the 2021 vinification – his ‘final vintage’ at Lafon-Rochet.
‘After acquiring this exceptional terroir, it quickly became obvious that, like the Tesserons, our commitment to Bordeaux winemaking is deeply rooted in our family’s DNA,’ said Jacky Lorenzetti, owner of Vignobles Cruse-Lorenzetti.
‘The latest development at Lafon-Rochet illustrates our devotion to guide each of our properties down its own path to excellence. We pursue with enthusiasm outstanding quality across all of our vineyards, which, despite their geographical differences, are linked by this ambition,’ he said.
Cruse added: ‘We are thrilled to entrust the directorship of Lafon-Rochet to Christophe Congé who, given his experience and knowledge of the great terroirs of the Médoc, will be able to help us in expressing the best of this beautiful vineyard.’
Having studied oenology in Bordeaux, Congé started his career at Château Doisy Daëne in Barsac before joining Domaines Barons de Rothschild in 1999.
Lafon-Rochet’s vineyards (55% of which planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% to Merlot and 5% to Cabernet Franc) surround the Château in a large contiguous plot bordering Lilian Ladouys to the north, and a stone’s throw away from Cos d’Estournel and Château Cos Labory, with Château Lafite Rothschild over the border in Pauillac.
Vignobles Cruse-Lorenzetti property stable also includes Saint-Estèphe’s Château Lilian Ladouys (Cru Bourgeois Exceptionnel), Pauillac fifth growth Château Pédescleaux, and Margaux third growth Château d’Issan.