FRANCE / USA - As has astonishingly become known today, the owner of the Deuxième Crus*-Bordeaux vineyard Cos d'Estournel, Michel Reybier, has bought the Château Montelena Winery, located in the Californian Napa Valley.
The purchase money was not to be heard either by the owners of the Montelena Winery, by father Jim and son Bo Barret, or by Jean-Guillaume Prats, General Manager at Cos d'Estournel. But respective media in the USA estimate a byuing price of about 110 Million US dollars. Now the parties hope that the US authorities permit the take-over.
"The purchase of the Montelena Winery can be compared to the purchase of a top Bordeaux vineyard. We are not sure yet what the future will bring, but we will take up employment with a team of French and Californian top workers", Prats declared in front of the Californian press. He added: "Both houses are known for their extraordinary and unique terroirs and both produce world class wines with singular attributes that distinguish them from their respective regional competitors."
The new executive committee, consisting of Bo Barrett (previous proprietor) and Grag Ralston (executive director of Château Montelena Winery) as well as Jean-Guillaume Prats (general manager of Cos d'Estournel), wants to create the new vintage together.
This transaction is already the third take over of that kind in this league after the sale of the Duckhorn Winery and Stag's Leap Wine Cellars in 2007. Château Montelena Winery, founded in 1882, belongs to the most historical vineyards in the USA. The Barrett Family took over the estate in 1972 and lead it to the Californian peak. Numerous, first of all high-level awards prove this. (aw.yoopress / translator r.baur)