Following Chateau Latour's decision to leave the en primeur system after the 2011 vintage, Jeannie Cho Lee MW spoke to Latour's president, Frederic Engerer, about what the future now holds for the First Growth.
What led you to the decision to leave the en primeur system?
Some call him a visionary and others consider him a businessman extraordinaire. Both designations ring equally true when you meet Bill harlan in person. This is a man with a strong sense of purpose – a man whose piercing look has an intensity that creates waves of energy around him. Harlan, a successful real estate developer in 1984, had the vision of crafting a ‘First Growth’ Napa Cabernet from 240 acres of hillside terrain in Oakville, California. read more
In 2003, during one of my earlier trips to China’s wine regions, I managed to visit the top three major wineries in one trip: Dynasty, Changyu and COFCO (Great Wall). It wasn’t long into my trip when I would hear this phrase repeatedly: “We are the biggest in China and the best.” It was a mantra conveyed to me within the first ten minutes, then several times throughout my visit, and repeated at least twice emphatically at the conclusion of my visit. I heard this first at Great Wall in Hebei, then again at Dynasty in Tianjin, and finally at Changu in Yantai.