de Villaine priming nephew to take over DRC

2nd February, 2016 by Lucy Shaw

Aubert de Villaine, co-director of Burgundy’s prized Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, is priming his nephew to take over the estate in the near future.

Aubert de Villaine

Aubert de Villaine

Speaking to db during the 2013 trade tasting of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti at Corney & Barrow’s London offices today, de Villaine said:

“I’m still kicking as the Americans say, but I’m training up my nephew, Bertrand de Villaine, who I hope will be able to take my place in a few years.”

With a case of Romanée-Conti 1990 recently selling for HK$1.5m at auction in Hong Kong, de Villaine admitted that the “extravagant” prices his wines sell for “bothers” him.

Romanée-Conti and La Tâche 2013

Romanée-Conti and La Tâche 2013

“It bothers me a lot that my wines are traded as a commodity and not enjoyed by wine lovers. It doesn’t make me happy. I try to control the distribution of the wines as much as I can so that we sell them to people who will keep them in their cellar and drink them.

“I ask all of our distributors to help me. They are less importers and more gatekeepers,” he said, adding, “I do my best to keep the prices at a high level but still affordable to amateur wine lovers and conoissuers with some means.”

As for the outcome of the Rudy Kurniawan case, in which he testified, de Villaine said he hopes it sends a stark warning out to aspiring wine counterfeiters.

“It’s difficult to speak of being satisfied with regards to someone being sent to prison for 10 years, but I’m very happy that the case came out and people now understand that you can’t make fake wines without there being consequences,” he told db.

“It’s hard to know how many fake wines are still out there, but there was an important court case in Europe recently regarding fake Domaine de la Romanée-Conti that ended in several people going to prison. I haven’t heard much from this little mafia since then,” he added.

Speaking about Burgundy recently being added to the UNESCO world heritage list, de Villaine described the nine-year process as “very long but rewarding”.

“I hope it will make the winemakers realise that in Burgundy they have something precious. I’ve passed on my presidency to a friend of mine,” he said.

“The UNESCO heritage will hopefully make tourists more interested in the vineyards and the landscape, which will help them understand the true character of Burgundy,” he added.

As for future plans, de Villaine said he’d love to make Musigny if the opportunity arose.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please note that comments are subject to our posting guidelines in accordance with the Defamation Act 2013. Posts containing swear words, discrimination, offensive language and libellous or defamatory comments will not be approved.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Job vacancies

PR Account Executive

Clementine Communications Ltd
Fulham, UK

PR Senior Account Manager

Clementine Communications Ltd
Fulham, London

Marketing Manager

Berkmann Wine Cellars
London, N7, UK

Brand Manager

Berkmann Wine Cellars
London, N7, UK

Sales Account Manager

Jascots Wine Merchants
London, UK

Marylebone Sales Manager

Philglas & Swiggot
Marylebone, London, UK

Area Sales Manager

Bon Coeur Fine Wines
North England, UK

Procurement Assistant – Wine

Adnams PLC
Southwold, UK

Account Manager Central London

Speciality Drinks Ltd
London, UK

Brand Ambassador

Speciality Drinks Ltd
London, UK

National Business Development Manager

Speciality Drinks Ltd
London, UK

Marketing Assistant

Hatch Mansfield
Ascot, Berkshire, UK

Marketing Manager

Bancroft Wines
London, UK

Regional Sales Manager – Scotland

Bancroft Wines
London, UK

The Global Sparkling Masters 2017

Deadline : 25th August 2017

The Global Malbec Masters 2017

Deadline : 25th August 2017

Global Chardonnay Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st September 2017

The Global Sauvignon Blanc Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st September 2017

Click to view more

The Global Rosé Masters 2017

With wines from the palest of pink to almost ruby red, bone dry to almost cloyingly sweet, reductively handled to barrel-aged, as well as gently spritzy to fully sparkling.

The Global Organic Masters 2017

The drinks business is thrilled to announce the launch of The Global Organic Masters

The Drinks Business Awards 2017

Now in its 15th year, the db awards have become the most authoritative, internationally respected badge of achievement in the alcoholic drinks industry.

The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters 2017

the drinks business Hong Kong announces its first year of The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters.

Click to view more