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Burgundy land offers reach fever pitch

The desire to own vineyard land in Burgundy has reached fever pitch, with one producer in the region comparing it to buying a piece of the Eiffel Tower.

LVMH paid a reported €100m for the 8.66-hectare Clos des Lambrays

Speaking to the drinks business during a lunch at London-based fine wine merchant Berry Bros & Rudd last week, Beaune-based Olivier Bernstein said:

“The price of vineyard land in the region has reached cult status. Everyone wants in on a slice of the grand cru and premier cru action.

“Demand is really crazy at the moment and the price per hectare is so high – I’ve heard rumours of offers for grand cru land being made at €48m per hectare.”

Bernstein revealed that interest in the land was coming from all over the world: “There has been interest from Chinese, Japanese and American businessmen – buying a prime plot of land in Burgundy is like buying a piece of the Eiffel Tower,” he said.

Olivier Bernstein

“Bordeaux’s crazy pricing lately has helped bring people back to Burgundy. Demand for the wines has increased due to small yields over the last four years. The price of land in Mazis-Chambertin has gone up five times in the last two years,” he added.

In addition to foreign entrepreneurs, there has also been a recent surge in interest in buying land in Burgundy closer to home, with French luxury goods giant LVMH snapping up Clos des Lambrays earlier this year for a reported €100m.

The company’s first acquisition in Burgundy, at 8.66 hectares, LVMH paid €11.5m per hectare for the privilege. Château Latour owner François Pinault is also reportedly interested in buying land in the region.

Bernstein owns 0.2 hectares in Mazis-Chambertin and also owns a plot in Gevrey-Chambertin Les Champeaux. He reports that the price of premier and grand cru grapes in Burgundy has doubled over the last 7 years.

“It would be impossible to do what I did seven years ago now, so I was lucky I bought the land when I did,” he told db.

The average price of a hectare in Bordeaux’s Pauillac region is €2m, while the average price for the same amount of land in grand cru Burgundy stood at €4m in 2013.

Bernstein’s first vintage was 2007. He now produces six Grand Crus from the Côte de Nuits, along with small amounts of white from Meursault, Puligny and Corton-Charlemagne.

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