Monday, February 27, 2012

Look out... here comes the Chinese.... again! Hide the Pinot Noir quick!


Chinese investors have bought five more Bordeaux chateaux in recent weeks, according to reports.

A further 12 are likely to be bought by Chinese buyers in the near future, the Bordeaux Chamber of Commerce says.

Chateau du Grand Moueys, a 170-hectare estate in Entre-Deux-Mers, was acquired last week by Hong Kong-based Zhang Jinshan.

Qu Nai Jie, president of the Haichang Group, has already snapped up nearby Chateau de Grand Branet as well as Chateau Branda, Chateau Laurette and Chateau Thebot. He is reportedly interested in more acquisitions.

Some Chinese owners devote their entire output to exports to China, but Grand Moueys will sell up to 20% of its wine in Europe and the US, according to an AFP report.

In a somewhat related news story: Bordeaux's classified growths have approved the first-ever standardized Chinese translation of their names, auction house Christie's has unveiled an official translation of each of the 61 chateaux in the 1855 classification, after 12 months of collaboration with the Medoc estates.

Christie's staff have worked with chateaux to agree on Chinese translations for their estate while others already had Chinese names. However, some chateaux including Cos d'Estournel have opted not to take a Chinese name.

The Chinese translations have been published on a poster, which will be unveiled to the Bordeaux trade during the 2012 En Primeur week.

Christie's hopes to produce similar translations for producers in Sauternes, Bordeaux's right bank and Burgundy in the future.

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