That’s quite a stern portrait of you in Château Margaux’s information satchel, Monsieur Valance.
There were many, but Corinne Mentzelopoulos, the current owner of Château Margaux, chose this one. She took the photo herself.
Perhaps that’s how she sees you.
What is Madame Mentzelopoulos like? For someone who took the reigns from her father, she must be iron-willed. But her love for photography divulges a poetic side.
She has four passions: photography, reading, literature and the arts, and lastly, dogs,
Does Château Margaux have an heir or heirs?
Corinne has two daughters and one son. Alexandra Petit works closely with me and takes care of social media, marketing and communications, while the second daughter specialises in the fine art in London. As for the son, who is 26 and fresh out of wine business management school, he will join us in a few months, which is very important, as we’ll have the new generation next to the old.
The estate's history isn't so straightforward, is it? After all, it changed hands so many times.
Yes, especially since we’re so fond of beheadings in France—that’s what happened to the owner of Château Margaux in 1789, after the French Revolution. Elie du Barry was her name.
Paint me a picture of strolling through the estate.
It is honestly the most gorgeous castle you can find in the region. What is unique is that, because of all these big trees on the grounds, you don’t see the château immediately. Suddenly it creeps up on you, and it’s magnificent.
Some say that Château Margaux resembles the ‘Versailles of the Médoc.’
As it was built in 1810, it has these Greek columns, which at the time, were very popular. It’s composed of multiple buildings that were built between 1810 and 1815, save for one building from 1765, and another we commissioned to the architect Norman Foster in 2015.
The Norman Foster?
The one and only. We wanted to find the right artist to create something that would work well with the landscape. It’s been 400 years that we’ve been making wine on the same terroir.
What does this contemporary building’s purpose serve?
It is a vat room. The vineyard's 80 hectares were previously divided into 25 big plots, so we needed 25 big vats to vinify everything. But we’re doing things differently now by dividing the 80 hectares in 100 smaller plots. The new cellar has allowed us to add 75 more vats.