About Bernard Magrez
Unlike most Châteaux owners in Bordeaux, Bernard Magrez isn’t the heir of a multiple generations winegrowers family. Everything Bernard Magrez knows about wine, he taught himself through experience and travels.
His career in the wine business started at the age of 22 when he got hired by a wine merchant in Bordeaux. At the time, Bernard knew nothing about wine but he made a point to learning as much as he could about vineyard management and winemaking. An ambitious man by nature, his goal was to become the owner of some Grands Crus.
He started traveling around the world to discover all sorts of vineyards, more or less known, learning along the way about winemaking. He didn’t want to do things differently, he just wanted to do them as well as the Grands Crus Classés. Soon he realized that there was a common factor to all the great wines in the world: the quality of the terroir that gives each wine its unique taste.
About twenty years after setting foot in the wine world for the first time, and after having created a successful wine brand, Bernard Magrez acquired his first estate in 1981: Château Pape Clément, Grand Cru Classé de Graves.
That was the start of a series of acquisitions that took him all around the world again, following his instincts and paving the path of excellence for the Bernard Magrez wines.
Now at the head of 41 estates, including 4 Grands Crus Classés in Bordeaux – Château Pape Clément, Château Fombrauge, Château La Tour Carnet, and Clos Haut-Peyraguey – but also domaines in the South of France, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Chile, etc., Bernard Magrez keeps developing his Châteaux, always with the goal to offer the best wine experience to the wine lovers that visit them.
Bernard Magrez’s Grands Crus Classés
Château Pape Clément, GRAND CRU CLASSÉ DE GRAVES: The Château Pape Clément owes his name to its first owner: Bertrand de Got, who became Pope under the name of Clement V (1309-1314). The vineyard was planted in the 13th century and first harvested in 1252. It is one of the oldest Grands Crus de Bordeaux. The estate has always been exceptionally well managed with continuity and quality for almost five centuries. For a long time, its limited production was reserved mainly for the use of the archdiocese. In the 1980s, when Bernard Magrez took over the Château, he built an unprecedented international reputation for this Grand Cru Classé.
His tireless work, investment and development were rewarded in 2009 when Château Pape Clément was awarded a legendary 100 point score from the world-famous wine critic Robert Parker for Château Pape Clément Blanc. The following year in 2010, Château Pape Clément was again awarded a 100-point score, this time for the Grand Vin rouge. These awards put Château Pape Clément among the rare few who have received perfect scores for both their red and white wines, and adds a new chapter to the remarkable history of this exceptional estate.
Château Fombrauge, GRAND CRU CLASSÉ DE SAINT-EMILION: Fons Brogiera: a source surrounded by heather…This is how appeared for the first time the name of Fombrauge which embodies for six centuries the elegance of Saint-Emilion Grands Crus. Château Fombrauge is the largest Grand Cru Classé of Saint-Emilion with a vineyard stretching on 58.60 hectares (143 ac.). From the first harvest in 1599 to its acquisition by Bernard Magrez in 1999, six families have followed the fates of Château Fombrauge, providing the estate with an unparalleled stability and an unsurpassed pioneer soul. The diversity of the soils combined with multiple exposures give Château Fombrauge’s wines complexity and identity.
Château La Tour Carnet, GRAND CRU CLASSÉ EN 1855 MÉDOC: Built in 1112, the story of Château La Tour Carnet is marked by the History of France. From the 12th century until today, from the Hundred Years War to the great phylloxera epidemic, La Tour Carnet witnessed the adventures of men and time and played a major role in the revolution of the Medoc vineyard. Since the 16th century, special attention was paid to the cultivation of the vine and the wine quality. This exceptional work is recognized as early as 1855 when, during the Universal Exhibition in Paris, Château La Tour Carnet joined the very limited list of Grand Crus Classés.
Clos Haut-Peyraguey, 1 ER GRAND CRU CLASSÉ EN 1855 SAUTERNES: A Premier Grand Cru Classé since 1855, the Clos Haut-Peyraguey is located at the heart of the Sauternes region. Sitting opposite to the Château d’Yquem, with immediate neighbors such as Rayne-Vigneau and Château Guiraud, the Clos Haut-Peyraguey takes advantage of a unique terroir and climatic conditions to produce a wine that has been recognized for centuries as one of the top Sauternes.
The Bernard Magrez Experience
What better way to discover Bernard Magrez’s world than by visiting it? La Grande Maison de Bernard Magrez welcomes you with its 5-star hotel and the restaurant Pierre Gagnaire – who was recognized by his peers in 2015 as “Best Chef in the World”.
While you are staying in the area, make sure to experience Bernard Magrez’s Châteaux for a tour or tasting. You can also stay overnight in one of the Grand Cru Classé estates.
Lastly, art lovers will enjoy a tour of the Bernard Magrez Cultural Institute, a private artistic sponsorship initiative showcasing the works of artists-in-residence.