Not forgotten: Troplong Mondot

Sometimes wine is about more than what is in the glass. It can evoke feelings or remind you of people. For me, a glass of wine from Troplong Mondot will always be about the vineyard’s owner, Christine Valette-Paliente.

I met her on a wine-tasting holiday to Bordeaux in 2007. We spent a morning at her château in Saint Émilion, visiting the fields and tasting the various vintages. (I am pictured with her, above.)

The estate produces wines using the classic local grapes: merlot, cabernet sauvignon and cabernet franc.

Christine was a terrific ambassador for the château. Her passion for the wine produced there shone through.

Her great-grandfather bought the estate a century ago and Christine inherited it from her father in 1981. She is credited with turning around its fortunes. She oversaw a later harvest of the grapes, greater use of new oak barrels and smaller – but better – yields.

When I met her, she had recently had her wine reclassified as a premier grand cru, and its reputation – and price – rose accordingly. I recently saw a bottle on sale at Paris’ Charles de Gaulle airport wine hall for €160.

Sadly, when I was researching this post, I discovered that Christine died of cancer earlier this year.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have the room in my luggage for any of her wine back in 2007. Nevertheless, last night I raised a toast to her memory.

This entry was published on Wednesday, 11 June 2014 at 07:31. It’s filed under Food and wine and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

4 thoughts on “Not forgotten: Troplong Mondot

  1. I agree. Wine is about so much more than what’s in the glass: people, places, memories – sometimes good, sometimes sad. A microcosm of life, really. Enjoyed reading the blog, but why stop after a year?

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