The Bordelais traditionally sell their wine on Bordeaux Place, now top Australian producers are no exception. Sue Hodder, winemaker at Wynns, tells us why.
Since the 17th century it has been impossible to buy wine directly from Bordeaux producers. The complex three-tier system, known as La Place de Bordeaux, is how top producers set their price and reach buyers in the know.
It started with the aristocratic owners of châteaux, now its bankers and insurance companies who dominate but an increasing number of well-known international producers of stellar wines are using “La Place” for their wines. Some say it’s out of date and labourious, however the system is established and proven route to market – a producer can sell out of a particular vintage immedaiately.
In the last decade there has been a rise in winemakers and producers from regions around the world releasing their very best wines. Top producers from Argentina, Australia, Spain, and more, are putting their most-prized on “La Place”, Australian ‘First Growth’ Wynns John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon is no exception. In fact Wynns put itself alongside some of the world’s finest wines, by being one of the first Australian wines to launch there four vintages ago.
Riddoch on the Place
John Riddoch has become one of the definitive Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon, made only in years when grapes of extraordinarily high quality are available and classified as Exceptional in Langton’s Classification of Australian Wine, the highest ranking in the collectible wine market.
Wynns senior winemaker Sue Hodder believes that by launching on the Bordeaux Place she is giving collectors around the world to have access to their flagship wine. “Wynns John Riddoch is our piece de resistance reserve Cabernet.” She says, “This is the wine we obsess over, reflecting a true sense of place, our amazing vineyards, the Terra Rossa soil and heritage of the Coonawarra region.”
“Much can be said about the 2020 vintage,” she continued. “Good rainfall during winter and spring to set up the 2020 Coonawarra vintage. Early growing season rainfall from budburst to flowering was moderate, in line with the long-term average. The delicate flowering and set phase impacted fruit set and resulted in very low yields. None-the-less there were still small parcels of excellent fruit worthy of the John Riddoch label.”
The negociants selling Wynns John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon include CVBG, Louis Vialard, Borie Manoux, Joanne Rare Wines, Sovex and Ulysse Cazabonne.