01438 741177         thewinesociety.com

Chateau Giscours fraud case


The Ch Giscours fraud case has reached a conclusion though there is an appeal going in.
The court order is to destroy 53,000 bottles of the chapitalised wine, I have no idea what the rules are in France but surely as the wine has not been bottled yet it could be sold as Margaux at a reduced price, de classified, 53,000 bottles of Margaux down the drain is more criminal than the offence committed.


It has been announced on dB website that the owner of above has just died.


I don’t think it could be sold as Margaux as the relevant vats contained Merlot which is not allowed to be chaptalised at all under the Margaux AOP rules.

It does seem to have been a series of technical errors if what I read is correct.


If they’re willing to scribble Vin de France in marker pen on the label and flog it for tuppence ha’pny, I’ll be happy to take a case or two off their hands :+1:


They were given permission to Chaptalise for 1 degree alcohol, then 45 minutes later another email arrived saying permission did not cover Merlot.

By then they’d done two tanks on Merlot. These were held apart, never added to main blend.

They are appealing the decision to fine them and the suspended sentence on their MD.

Details and Giscours appeal statement is here


It does sound rather harsh.

Now that’s the kind of rapid-fire chain of command and hop-to-it work ethic we need on this side of the channel!



It is rather surprising :wink:


Although reading the whole article it seems they didn’t read the " not merlot" mail till the following day, which perhaps allows for a more likely pace of work.
It does seem very harsh, though it’s hard not to wonder if there is some element of taking advantage of what you know or suspect is a mistake. Who really knows?
Anyway I imagine there will be some sort of compromise made, which sadly won’t allow us to pick up the wine for a pittance. But you can always hope …


Hey, it might turn up in Lidl for £15 a pop ten years down the line…!


Perhaps to support my cynicism I should say that I remember helping with a couple of harvests near Castillon some 40 years ago, and the patron regularly popping out at night to pour sugar in his tanks. It didn’t seem such an unusual activity!


If the grapes have riped properly with good vineyard management it shouldn’t need such a large adjustment in vat.


They seem to be coming at regular intervals now…