The importance of the city of Bordeaux as a trading port for wines is due to the connection with
Originated in the middle of the 12th century. In 1152 Eleonore of Aquitaine (1122-1204) married Henry Plantagenet Count of Anjou (1133-1189). Eleonore brought among other things as a dowry
on. When her husband ascended the throne of England in 1154 as King Henry II, he made claim to large parts of France. Thus began the more than 300 years long dispute between England and France with the Hundred Years War (1337-1453) as a highlight. About the port Bordeaux wines were shipped to England at the time of English rule on a large scale. It is no coincidence that, as a consequence, major trading companies established themselves here, where the wines were added
The peak was reached in the 14th century, in which the existing until today Vintner's Company
(Association of English wine merchants) was founded. By the middle of this century, an estimated 700,000 hectoliters were estimated annually clairet
(Claret) shipped to England, which corresponded to an average of six bottles per capita per year. Finally, in 1453, after long wars and turmoil, all the English lands on the mainland finally came to France. Of the wine trade
while upright with England, but never reached the volume of earlier. In any case, that was the foundation for many Négociants
(Wine merchant) in Bordeaux.
Around the middle of the 17th century, Holland, the heartland of today, rose Netherlands
The wine was bought in large quantities in Bordeaux, among other things, and brought by ship to the numerous Dutch colonies overseas. For the purpose of durability
the wines were often talked about. Through these shops, Dutchmen came into the country by clearing the swamps in the country Médoc
Here the viticulture on a larger scale justified. At the end of this century, the trade war between France and England escalated, as a result, tariffs on French wine were constantly increasing.
In England, an exclusive market for Bordeaux wines, which could afford only wealthy circles. From there originating wine merchants founded trading houses in Bordeaux. Those were Barton & Guestier
(1725), William Johnston (1734) and Tastet & Lawton (1740). Later followed German as Cruse
(1819), Eschenauer (1821), Kressmann (1858) and sickle
(1883). Important houses of French origin include the family empire Borie-Manoux
or Castéja (1870), Dourthe-Kressmann
(1840), Calvet (1870), Castel Frères
(1930). Strong connections already existed from the beginning of the 18th century and still exist today through the German wine trading house Carl Tesdorpf wine trade to Lübeck
(Trading houses) were not just interested in buying and selling. The purchased wine was stored in the Chais (cellars) in Bordeaux or surroundings and expanded and then sold in barrel and later also bottle. Their cellar masters were often much better educated than those of the producers. The link between producers and trading houses formed brokers. Thus, the blending of wines of different qualities and impermissibly even wineries was possible. After the Second World War (1939-1945) a fundamental change took place in this regard. Until then, excellent producers had also sold wine in barrels to the dealers.
One of the pioneers was Baron Philippe de Rothschild
(1902-1988), to the annoyance of the trading houses already starting from the year 1924 the complete self-bottling of the wines of his Château Mouton-Rothschild
had introduced. These Erzeugerabfüllung
was documented on the label by the term "Mise en bouteilles au Château". But it took until the year 1959, until that also the Crus Classés were only sold to the trade in producer bottling. This greatly reduced the supremacy of the formerly almost omnipotent wine merchants. For vineyards and wine quantities of all countries, see Wine production volumes