Friday, January 8, 2010

2007 Mouton, and the Global Nature of Wine

Bordeaux, as I’ve reported here before, has been back in the news. All of the hype behind the 2009 vintage--or, at the very least, the harvest and fruit-quality--has led to the region assuming the desirable place to which it’s accustomed. Everyone, it seems, is thinking about whether it will live up to the early promise and, if so, how much to invest in it when the time comes.

This follows several years in which Bordeaux was a bit of an uncertainty. After all the drama (and, to be sure, it was well deserved) surrounding the 2005 vintage, the Bordelais arguably made a series of missteps when it came to their pricing, maintaining them at levels based more on what the 2005’s commanded than what was perhaps justified by the merits of the vintages that followed, ample though they may have been.

But the 2009, as I’ve said, has been generating some exceptionally positive buzz. Still, the world of wine moves on, and there’s plenty of wine to think about between 2005 and 2009.

That having been noted, yesterday’s report that, according to, “French sculptor and graphic artist Bernar Venet has produced the label for the 2007 Chateau Mouton Rothschild,” has been met with less fanfare that it traditionally is. This is because, according to the site, “the announcement of the 2007 artists label has been overshadowed by speculation as to who will provide the image for the 2008 Mouton...[There have been] rumours that the wine's label would be painted by a leading Chinese artist – in order to boost sales in the region.”

That would be a significant nod to the ever-growing importance of the Asian wine markets, and an excellent symbol of the increasingly global nature of wine. And that benefits everyone.


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