Flamboyant Mouton

18 April 2010
Author: Jeannie Cho Lee


Mouton is a wine that lives on the edge. It lived near the periphery of the first growths until 1973 when it was elevated from a 2 nd to a 1st growth. It consistently challenges the serious, traditional style of first growth Bordeaux with its expressive, ripe fruit character. When one meets Baroness Philippine de Rothschild , the person precisely matches the wine that bears her name. The former actress has an amazing presence, naturally drawing all the attention in a room to herself. She has large features – large eyes, large presence and Mouton is almost always a big wine.


In 2009, Mouton produced its characteristic style of very ripe dense, concentrated wine that could easily be mistaken on the nose for a top New World Cabernet. But on the palate, there is more complexity and layers of fruit with a velvety tannin texture that very few top New World Cabernets can replicate. It is flamboyant, generous, theatrical and very different from the other first growths — it is class Mouton. This year, Mouton will be adored by its fans and criticised by those who do not appreciate this style. At a pure quality level, regardless of personal preference, I feel Mouton made a great 2009 that aptly expresses its own unique colourful style.