Domaine de Long Dai
Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite)
Qiu Shan Valley (Shandong Province)
50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Marselan, 25% Cabernet Franc
“Our family have been winemakers at Lafite for 150 years so it is in our culture to be patient and take our time to make sure we release a wine we are proud of. This vintage of Long Dai is the first chapter of a very long story as winemakers in China.” – Saskia de Rothschild
The choice for the name Long Dai came from the family’s wish to find an identity that could show how this wine is the perfect balance between nature, and the care of men and women who have helped it reveal its best potential. It was also important to find a name that showed tribute to Shandong’s exceptional local history. Inspired by the Taishan sacred mountain in Shandong, Long Dai represents an idealized mountain that rose through the power of nature and was then carefully chiseled by human hands. Our choice of name describes what we do as winemakers: try to perfect the raw materials provided by nature.
The wine estate developed by the Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) can now count on 25 hectares of vines in full production (among 30 planted). “One thing we now know is the more the vines have aged, the better the wines we have produced, so we are excited to keep learning from this terroir over the years to come,” explains Olivier Trégoat, Director of DBR (Lafite) international estates.TERROIR & VINTAGE NOTES
The 30 hectares of vineyards are spread across 360 terraces as per the traditional agriculture in the region. This has enabled us to preserve the landscape and the soil structure. Disbudding and green harvesting naturally reduce yields and allow the grapes to reach their phenolic maturation.
The most notable characteristic of this vintage was the relatively dry start to the growth season. Particularly heavy rain arrived on August 3rd (150 mm in a few hours) followed by a hailstorm on the western side of the vineyard on August 5th. We benefitted from beautiful late summer weather throughout the ripening period.
In order to harvest at the best time, we made up to three rounds of selective picking among the various plots. The low rainfall at the start of the season strongly influenced yields, which were around 20 hl/ha. Harvests took place September 8th – October 25th, with a total of ten full days of picking.WINEMAKING & AGEING
The wine is made according to the traditional Bordeaux method. The fermentation is started immediately, with gentle pumping-over to ensure a gentle extraction of the tannins. Total maceration time lasts between 18 and 20 days. After malolactic fermentation, the wines are blended prior to ageing in oak barrels. Most of the barrels are made by the Tonnellerie des Domaines in Pauillac. The wine is aged 18 months in French oak barrels and bottled at the estate.TASTING NOTES
The nose is marked by black fruits like blackberry and blueberry, and the Marselan grape variety brings in subtle hints of sweet spice and violet. The attack is fresh and lively, on the palate; the wine shows a nice amplitude and elegant tannins.