6 of the interview with
Château Haut Brion
you work at Haut-Brion, where there is no crisis, do you think
of the other wineries in Bordeaux and in France, and their
course. We cannot separate ourselves from them. Haut-Brion
is closely linked to Bordeaux and reciprocally. I want to
be positive, I believe in the potential of the wines of Bordeaux.
I hope that the future will side with me.
It should be said that there was an unhappy choice at a given
time. In 1956. we had a harsh winter in Bordeaux. There was
one meter (39 inches) of snow for 15 days. Part of the vineyard
was destroyed. Vines were dead, and a quarter of the vineyard
was lost. We had to replant the vineyard. The wineries with
strong financial backing replanted with the same density.
The others planted with different densities with enough space
for a tractor to move, and tieing up the vines higher. They
divided by two the density but not the production. But if
you produce the same amount of wine, the quantity of grapes
per vine is too important, the load is too significant. It
was a dramatic choice. Now, there is a dynamic to densify
In addition, Bordeaux has a very strong tradition of appellation,
of identity, with Chateaux and vintages. At a certain level
we should forget this concept of chateau to lead toward a
concept of brand.
What would you recommend to improve the communication
and marketing of french wines?
mass-market wines, we need a simple communication, clearly
identifiable, with for example grape variety information.
For the greatest wines, it is another world, another style
of communication. We always need to inform more and more.
Anyway, we will have no choice. With the traceability, the
law urges us to identify the wine making process from the
grape to the wine bottle. The transparency today becomes an
The champagne has a very good communication for example. We
can take inspiration from. For the other regions, it is very
fragmented, and so it is more complicated to communicate to
But in Burgundy, the dealers are well-know name, they are
brand name, more a signature than anything else. In Bordeaux,
I think that we will lead into this direction.
Do you think that a fourth generation of Delmas will
follow your steps... in several decades?
I do not
have a kid yet but I wish to have some. If one of my future
children moves towards this way. If he has the skills and
if the Dillon family is still there and trust him (I mean
girl or boy), I would be delighted and proud. The same way
as, I hope, my father is of me.
to the beginning of the interview with Jean-Philippe
Delmas, Chateau Haut-Brion
this Haut-Brion poster