Moët moves Aussie winemaker to Napa21st July, 2014 by Patrick Schmitt
Moët Hennessy Estates & Wines has moved winemaker Robert Mann from Margaret River’s Cape Mentelle to Napa’s Newton Vineyard.
Mann, who has been at Cape Mentelle since 2005, is to become Newton’s estate director, reporting to Jean-Guillaume Prats, president of Moët Hennessy Estates & Wines.
Mann is well respected for his winemaking in Australia, especially his work with Cabernet Sauvignon, and is no stranger to Napa having acted as harvest chief winemaker with Newton for the 2007 vintage.
Mann said of his new role, “Moving from Australia’s most highly regarded Cabernet region of Margaret River to the USA’s most highly regarded Cabernet region Napa Valley presents an amazing opportunity.”
Newton Vineyard is recognised as an American pioneer of unfiltered wines and the Newton Estate comprises 560 acres of mountaintop land of which 120 are currently under vine.
“With Newton’s principle vineyard at Spring Mountain combined with vineyards Mt Veeder, Yountville and Carneros, the opportunity to create truly distinctive and inspiring wines based on the historic pillars of Newton is both unique and exciting,” commented Mann.
Prats commented, “I am delighted that Rob has agreed to this challenge – the combination of our unique terroir at Newton combined with Rob’s experience and depth of understanding of Cabernet makes this a winning combination.
Meanwhile, Cameron Murphy has been promoted to estate director at Cape Mentelle, while Frédérique Perrin, previously oenology and production manager for Champagne Krug, has been appointed to the new role of technical director at Cape Mentelle, reporting to Murphy.
The Margaret River winery has also promoted Evan Thompson from winemaker to cellar master.
Estates & Wines, the Moët Hennessy wine division, comprises Chandon in Napa, Brazil, Argentina, India, China and Australia; Cloudy Bay in Marlborough; Cape Mentelle in Margaret River; Newton Vineyard in Napa; Terrazas de los Andes and Cheval des Andes in Argentina; Numanthia in Toro, and Shangri-La in Yunnan China.