Most people who are interested in the world of fine wine have heard the name Chateau Mouton Rothschild. Known for its tradition of having artists design its labels annually, Mouton Rothschild is a fine wine that every wine-drinker and collector dreams to taste or own. A wine produced in the Pauillac appellation that is as artistic as its labels.
The Journey to Excellence
Chateau Mouton Rothschild gained its present name after it was acquired by Baron Nathaniel Rothschild, an Englishman of the famous family, in 1853. The chateau was purchased with the intention of having his own wine to serve to his prestigious guests. Despite its budding fame, thanks to its quality, Mouton Rothschild struggled to gain the cult following that it has today. Its owners were unwilling to travel to the then-neglected region. In 1922, Baron Philippe de Rothschild, barely 20 years old, took the reins of the estate that he would devote his entire life to. In 1924, Baron Philippe asked Jean Carlu to design the label. This was years ahead of the era’s current marketing practices.
In 1945, to celebrate the Allied victory and mark his return to his estates, Baron Philippe asked Philippe Jullian to illustrate the Mouton Rothschild label. The “V” for Victory is widely acclaimed. Since then, the label for each vintage has been illustrated with the reproduction of a contemporary artist’s original artwork especially created for Mouton Rothschild.
After a long battle, Chateau Mouton Rothschild achieved the status Classified First Growth of which it had been unfairly deprived in the 1855 classification. Jacques Chirac, the Minister of Agriculture at the time, signed a decree allowing Mouton to officially join the elite group that it had belonged de facto for many years.
In 1988, Philippine de Rothschild took the reigns as owner of the chateau after her father passed. Her dedication to tradition and excellence allowed the reputation to grow far beyond what could have been expected. She launched a second wine, named Petit Mouton, in 1993. She invested heavily in the modernization of the chateau: including production tools, marketing strategies and the distribution system for their wines. The chateau is currently run by Philippine de Rothschild’s three children: Camille, Philippe and Julien.
Unique Artistic Style
The style of Mouton Rothschild can be interpreted in many different aspects of the chateau. Obviously there are the labels that strike up conversation in the art and wine world annually. We should also mention the cellar that was created to accommodate production on the estate grounds. In 2012, the scenographer Richard Peduzzi and the Bordeaux architect Bernard Mazieres in consultation with Philippe Dhalluin, designed and built a new vat room for Mouton Rothschild. The room combines tradition and cutting–edge technology and includes a tasting room overlooking the vines.
Chateau Mouton Rothschild is a Classified First Growth that cannot be outdone. The quality is a direct result of the art that is performed as the grapes grow each year. The 84 hectare estate is handpicked and practices traditional growing methods meticulously. The vines are planted on a terroir that is typical of the Pauillac appellation, composed of gravel and sand on a limestone sub-soil. The property grows 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 3% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot. The art of wine growing has been synonymous with the art of the wine label for several years. Chateau Mouton Rothschild is nothing short of excellence.