Wine lovers can now make their own Bordeaux vintage

Tue Apr 20, 2010 7:08am EDT
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By Eric Barrere

BORDEAUX (Reuters Life!) - Wine lovers can now make their own Bordeaux wines, mixing grape varieties and grapes from different vineyards just like the professionals do.

Do-it-yourself winemaking company Crushpad started out in California in 2004 by providing the winery, tools, grapes and knowledge for wine enthusiasts who wanted to make their own wines and has now opened another D-I-Y winery at Chateau Teyssier in the heart of Saint-Emilion, France.

Budding vintners can participate as much or as little as possible, getting involved in the picking, crushing, tasting, bottling, or they can just make decisions about grapes and labels while monitoring progress over the Internet.

Franco-American businessman Stephen Bolger brought the can-do American concept of Crushpad to Bordeaux, where vintage wines can sell for hundreds of dollars a bottle.

Bolger left a successful business career in 2003 after reading an article in Fortune magazine about Crushpad.

He joined the group in California, brought the idea to Bordeaux and has selected several plots of vines.

Last weekend, a few dozen budding Bordeaux barons came to Chateau Teyssier for tastings and plot visits.

"The client decides the style of wine he wants to create, establishes a plan of action for the wine-making process and participates as much or as little in the creation of his own wine," Bolger said.   Continued...