Château Margaux, Premier Grand Cru Classé from Bordeaux, on a first visit to India


Margaux.jpgThe visit of a First Growth from Bordeaux attracts rock-star like attention and anticipation by wine lovers. More so when it’s the Château’s first visit to a country, as it is in this case…and with the mystical Château Margaux there is its extra exclusivity to celebrate, writes Sanjay Menon. Château Margaux, the only Premier Grand Cru of Bordeaux from the Margaux appellation, produces a wine that is distinctly different from the other four.

Descriptors only partially describe the experience: Elegant, graceful, charming, subtle, soft, silky, refined, seductive, true to terroir, and easy to match with food. What makes this wine so unique? The French would say it is the combination of, “Terroir, Savoir and Histoire.”
Now a select group of afficionados in Delhi and Bombay are invited to have their own Château Margaux Experience, and construct their own adjectives. To guide this unique experience, the aristocratic and enchanting Corinne Mentzelopoulos, owner of Chateau Margaux, is coming to India herself for the first time, along with the legendary winemaker Paul Pontallier, who will present a selection of some of the best vintages direct from the cellars of the Château.
Why India? Well, in a sense, Margaux is a home-coming. André Mentzelopoulos, Corinne’s father, made his first fortune in China, India and Pakistan, trading cereals in the import-export market, which led to acquiring Potin, a French supermarket chain, and thence to the purchase of Château Margaux in 1977. As a young girl, Corinne remembers Bombay fondly. But beyond her personal fondness, Corinne believes that
India deserves the finest wines. Her father passed away too young, in 1980, to bring
this legacy back to India himself. Corinne is coming to India to complete the circle.
Rahul Akerkar will host the first of the series of events in grand style as only he can
in Bombay at his spanking new TOTE on the Turf, at Mahalaxmi Racecourse, on
Wednesday 27th October, 2010. The guests coming in from the a sultry Mumbai
October will be refreshed with champagne from Jerobaoms of Pol Roger Brut
before sitting down to five exquisitely paired courses bringing out the best in the following wines:
Pavillon Blanc du Château Margaux 2008
Pavillon Rouge du Château Margaux 2000
Château Margaux 1999
Château Margaux 1995
Château Margaux 1989
Château Margaux 1978
In Delhi, Dhruv and Rati Sawhney and family, ably supported by Manish Gupta and his team at the Taj Mahal, Man Singh Road, are putting together a most memorable event that only Dhruv can do in typical fashion.
Dhruv will pour the ultra-chic, ultra boutique Jacquesson Cuvee 734 also from Jeroboam, followed by the same wines mentioned above. Amongst the highlights is the attention to and precision in pairing special dishes for the vegetarians, of which there are a number of neglected guests at wine dinners.
On October 30th a group of top businessmen, from around the country will participate
in a Bordeaux Master Class by Eric Vogt, who has been conducting the Bordeaux
Master Class for Harvard University undergraduates for the past 15 years. This will
be followed by a superb winemaker dinner at Four Seasons Bombay prepared under
the watchful eyes of General Manager Vincent Hoogewijs, himself a collector of
Château Margaux and F&B Director, Moorthy Mudliar, at his first assignment in his
home country.

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