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La Mondotte dates back to the early 19th century. Cocks & Féret ("Bordeaux and its Wines"), mention it in their second edition in 1868. It is thus entirely untrue that La Mondotte was "created" in 1996, as one sometimes hears. During the 1996 revision of the Saint-Emilion Classification, the commission ruled that La Mondotte needed to have its own separate winemaking facility. Up until then, the wine was made at Château Canon La Gaffelière, albeit in a separate location. Major investments were made to satisfy the commission's requirement... for a 4.5 hectares vineyard !
In 1983, Joseph-Hubert von Neipperg asked one of his children to take charge of Canon La Gaffelière. At age 26, Stephan had a solid background in finance, management, and agronomy thanks to his education not only in Germany, but also in Paris and Montpellier. The time had come for this well-read young man passionately interested in history and classical music to focus his energies on his family's outstanding terroir in Bordeaux. Stephan von Neipperg spent the next two years becoming intimately acquainted with the estate. He discovered the countless operations necessary to make wine, "a unique and emotional product". He continues to perfect his mastery of the many facets of winemaking, from the vineyard to the cellar, as well as ageing in barrel and in bottle, and international sales and marketing. As opposed to other agricultural products, Stephan von Neipperg believes that "added value in wine is always rewarded". He therefore decided to take a path from which he has never since deviated: to make the most of his terroir and to adopt a long-term approach.
Excellent hydric regulation encourages the vines to sink their roots deep into the soil. The superb sun exposure and fine natural drainage due to the steep slope make this a very early-maturing terroir. The vines are an average of 50 years old and the vineyard contains only premium grape varieties (75% Merlot and 25% Cabernet Franc).
All cellar practices at the Comtes von Neipperg estates are quality-oriented. Special care is taken during maceration so that extraction is as gentle and controlled as possible. The major challenge is to adapt extraction to the specific characteristics of each vintage. Both alcoholic fermentation and maceration take place in oak vats in order to develop maximum colour and flavour. Each vat is considered a separate entity and treated accordingly. The cap is punched down (pigeage) very slowly to avoid treating the grapes roughly. The philosophy behind all stages of winemaking is to make the most of the fruit and express the best from each vintage.
Bordeaux Vintage Report 2005 is a truly fantastic vintage with great quality across the board on both the Left and Right Banks.
The 2005 vintage became the most anticipated since 2000. The early market was heated and prices skyrocketed. The cold winter delayed bud break before the warm, dunny spring broke through. Even the vegetative growth and flowering gave a perfect start to the vintage. The summer turned out to be one of the driest ever, avoiding disaster, as the weather remained reasonably warm and not excessively hot like in 2003. The soil once again becomes a decisive quality factor. Gravelly areas, such as Graves, were hardest hit once again. In other words, you should expect quality wines.
For a short-term perspective, in the next two years, an excellent quantity of mature Bordeaux red wines will be available on the market. The 2004, 2002, 1999, 1994, 1992 and 1988 vintages offer a wide selection of wines that are pleasant to consume immediately or at most to store for a short period.
As investments, the best vintages of the last 35 years are 2018, 2016, 2010, 2009 ,2003, 1996, 1989, and 1982. The safest long-term investments are Latour, La Mission Haut-Brion, Haut-Brion, Le Pin Lafite and Pétrus.
Over the past 35 years, Bordeaux has experienced a substantial change in winemaking. Modern equipment and developing know-how have guaranteed more uniform quality. It appears that the next challenge will be dealing with extreme climates, including slow global warming, which has already given hints of its effects also in Bordeaux. It is impossible to say how Bordeaux wines will evolve over the next 35 years. We can only hope that their most characteristic trait, the elegant aristocratic nature underlined by a unique terroir, will never disappear.
Bordeaux Vintage Report 2005 est un millésime vraiment fantastique avec une grande qualité à tous les niveaux sur la rive gauche et la rive droite.
Le millésime 2005 est devenu le plus attendu depuis 2000. Le marché des primeurs a été chauffé et les prix ont grimpé en flèche. L’hiver froid a retardé le débourrement avant que le printemps chaud et dunny ne se brise. Même la croissance végétative et la floraison ont donné un début parfait au millésime. L’été s’est avéré être l’un des plus secs de tous les temps, évitant la catastrophe, car le temps est resté raisonnablement chaud et non excessivement chaud comme en 2003. Le sol redevient un facteur de qualité décisif. Les zones graveleuses, telles que Graves, ont été les plus touchées une fois de plus. En d’autres termes, il faut s’attendre à des vins de qualité.
Pour une perspective à court terme, dans les deux prochaines années, une excellente quantité de vins rouges de Bordeaux mûrs sera disponible sur le marché. Les millésimes 2004, 2002, 1999, 1994, 1992 et 1988 offrent une large sélection de vins agréables à consommer immédiatement ou tout au plus à stocker pendant une courte période.
En tant qu’investissements, les meilleurs millésimes des 35 dernières années sont 2003, 1996, 1989, 1986 et 1982. Les investissements à long terme les plus sûrs sont Latour, La Mission Haut-Brion, Haut-Brion, Le Pin et Pétrus.
Au cours des 35 dernières années, Bordeaux a connu un changement substantiel dans la vinification. Des équipements modernes et un savoir-faire en développement ont garanti une qualité plus uniforme. Il semble que le prochain défi sera de gérer les climats extrêmes, y compris le réchauffement climatique lent, qui a déjà donné des indices de ses effets également à Bordeaux. Il est impossible de dire comment les vins de Bordeaux vont évoluer dans les 35 prochaines années. Nous ne pouvons qu’espérer que leur trait le plus caractéristique, l’élégante nature aristocratique soulignée par un terroir unique, ne disparaîtra jamais.