To coincide with this year’s Vinexpo and in celebration of its 200th vintage, Château Margaux launched its new facilities, designed by Lord Norman Foster. iDealwine’s deputy managing director, Angélique de Lencquesaing, was among the media and wine trade guests.
Château Margaux recently unveiled its new cellar and underground library vault, with the type of reception to which only the greatest Bordeaux producers hold the secret. This project took more than three years under the supervision of the great architect, Norman Foster.
Arriving at Château Margaux, one of the first things that strike you is the beauty of the trees. The perfect alignment of plane trees form a majestic arch, a real green cathedral that frames the driveway to the imposing residence, constructed 200 years ago by architect Louis Combes. The serenity of this pre-eminence of vegetation – and not just vineyards – at this first growth obviously inspired Lord Norman Foster, to whom this project was entrusted.
The building, unveiled to guests on the opening night of Vinexpo, is the result of a harmonious architectural gesture that integrates the finesse of the château’s surroundings. It must be said that nothing has changed since the construction of the domaine, except for the 200 years! The covered roof tiles of the new cellar, similar to that of existing buildings, are supported externally by a row of pillars, taking on the form of the trees, which appears to prolong the driveway.
There is an impression of lightness that hides the building, which emerges in a beautiful, modern and successful blend of wood and metal, and that can be perfectly adapted to the latest technical innovations in winemaking.
Further down, when one enters the underground vault, the facility is both plain and ultra-modern… it could be used in an upcoming James Bond movie! The bottles will be carefully preserved in this marvellous setting – looking very pure and clean for the moment – just waiting for the precious bottles to fill the space.
To get out of the vault, there is a secret staircase that leads discreetly back through the surrounding vineyards. 007, you are told… These facilities are patiently awaiting the next harvest, after a superb growing season – flowering took place under perfect weather conditions. In addition to the first growth wine, Château Margaux will now also produce a white Château Margaux, previously labelled as Pavillon Blanc.
After the tour followed the festivities… dinner took place in a conservatory, built at the base of the château. Truffles, crystal and fine porcelain; majestic bouquets, baroque music and carefully orchestrated ballet dancers serving outstanding wines. Guests from all over the world were treated to a perfect demonstration of the art of French living, uniquely embodying the way of great Bordeaux producers. A very elegant way for the mythical Margaux to celebrate its 200th anniversary.
Translated from the original French article written by Angélique de Lencquesaing.