A trademark registration recently approved by China’s Trade Mark Office revealed that the inaugural bottles of Chateau Lafite Rothschild’s China project will very likely be named “Dong Shan 東山”, meaning East Mountain.
Earlier reports said the long awaited inaugural release would almost certainly take place in Autumn 2018. Some recent reports said it would happen on 8 August.
Chateau Lafite’s parent company Domaines Barons de Rothschild (DBR) started this China project ten years ago in the southern edge of Penglai city in China’s northeastern Shandong Province.
Called Domaine de Penglai, it had been a joint venture with China CITIC Group for almost ten years until CITIC transferred their stake to Lafite earlier this year “to focus on their core business”.
The registered trade mark, retrievable from China Trade Mark Office’s online database, has Dong Shan printed horizontally between two vertically arranged calligraphy Chinese characters.
The Chinese character 東 (Dong meaning East) is integrated into the "five arrows" symbol of DBR, while the character 山 (Shan meaning Mountain) is written in a way to resemble a mountain with three peaks.
Lafite’s project in Penglai has attracted many speculative talks since its inception in 2008.
First there were talks over a stalled early project, then over why they picked Shandong over the viticulturally more famous Ningxia region where the Chinese government has been encouraging wine companies with 50-year leases and the availability of grants.
The biggest question of all is why it was taking them so long to release their inaugural vintage.
Fortunately it seems, the market will soon be able to taste Lafite’s Chinese wine after ten long years of waiting.