Philippe de Rothschild
Baron Philippe de Rothschild (13 April 1902 – 20 January 1988) was a member of the Rothschild
Rothschild family
The Rothschild family , known as The House of Rothschild, or more simply as the Rothschilds, is a Jewish-German family that established European banking and finance houses starting in the late 18th century...

 banking dynasty
Rothschild banking family of France
The Rothschild banking family of France was founded in 1812 in Paris by James Mayer Rothschild . James was sent there from his home in Frankfurt, Germany by his father, Mayer Amschel Rothschild...

 who became a Grand Prix
Grand Prix motor racing
Grand Prix motor racing has its roots in organised automobile racing that began in France as far back as 1894. It quickly evolved from a simple road race from one town to the next, to endurance tests for car and driver...

 race-car driver, a screenwriter
Screenwriters or scriptwriters or scenario writers are people who write/create the short or feature-length screenplays from which mass media such as films, television programs, Comics or video games are based.-Profession:...

 and playwright
A playwright, also called a dramatist, is a person who writes plays.The term is not a variant spelling of "playwrite", but something quite distinct: the word wright is an archaic English term for a craftsman or builder...

, a theatrical producer
Theatrical producer
A theatrical producer is the person ultimately responsible for overseeing all aspects of mounting a theatre production. The independent producer will usually be the originator and finder of the script and starts the whole process...

, a film producer
Film producer
A film producer oversees and delivers a film project to all relevant parties while preserving the integrity, voice and vision of the film. They will also often take on some financial risk by using their own money, especially during the pre-production period, before a film is fully financed.The...

, a poet
A poet is a person who writes poetry. A poet's work can be literal, meaning that his work is derived from a specific event, or metaphorical, meaning that his work can take on many meanings and forms. Poets have existed since antiquity, in nearly all languages, and have produced works that vary...

, and one of the most successful wine
Wine is an alcoholic beverage, made of fermented fruit juice, usually from grapes. The natural chemical balance of grapes lets them ferment without the addition of sugars, acids, enzymes, or other nutrients. Grape wine is produced by fermenting crushed grapes using various types of yeast. Yeast...

 growers in the world.

Early life

Born in Paris, Georges Philippe de Rothschild was the younger son of Baron Henri James de Rothschild (1872–1947) (who was a noted playwright under the name André Pascal) and Mathilde Sophie Henriette von Weissweiller (1872–1926). At the outbreak of World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

, 12-year-old Philippe was sent to the safety of the family's vineyard in the village of Pauillac
Pauillac is a commune in the Gironde department in Aquitaine in southwestern France.-Population:-Wine:The commune consists of only 3000 acres of vineyards in the Haut-Médoc between the villages of Saint-Julien to the south and Saint-Estèphe to the north, but is home to three of Bordeaux's five...

 in the Médoc
The Médoc is a region of France, well known as a wine growing region, located in the département of Gironde, on the left bank of the Gironde estuary, north of Bordeaux. Its name comes from Medullicus, or "country of the Medulli", the local Celtic tribe...

. There, he developed a love of the country and the wine
French wine
French wine is produced in several regions throughout France, in quantities between 50 and 60 million hectolitres per year, or 7–8 billion bottles. France has the world's second-largest total vineyard area, behind Spain, and is in the position of being the world's largest wine producer...

 business, an enterprise in his family since 1853, but one his father and grandfather had shown little interest in. As a young man, in sharp contrast to the Rothschild family's staid aristocratic traditions, Philippe de Rothschild became a larger-than-life personality.

Car racing

During the 1920s, Philippe lived the life of a wealthy playboy, often found in the company of a beautiful woman, usually an actress, at one of the popular night spots in Paris. Philippe's older brother had made friends with Robert Benoist
Robert Benoist
Robert Marcel Charles Benoist was a French Grand Prix motor racing driver and war hero.-Early life:Born near Rambouillet, Île-de-France, France, Robert Benoist was the son of Baron Henri de Rothschild's gamekeeper...

 when they served together in the Armée de l'Air during World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 and through this connection, for a short time young Philippe took up Grand Prix motor racing
Grand Prix motor racing
Grand Prix motor racing has its roots in organised automobile racing that began in France as far back as 1894. It quickly evolved from a simple road race from one town to the next, to endurance tests for car and driver...

. From his father, he inherited the love of fast cars, but wishing to maintain a low profile Philippe used the pseudonym "Georges Philippe" in order to race anonymously.

Rothschild raced his own Bugatti T35C with moderate success, including coming fourth in the 1929 Monaco Grand Prix
1929 Monaco Grand Prix
The 1929 Monaco Grand Prix was the first Grand Prix to be run in the Principality. It was set up by wealthy cigarette manufacturer, Anthony Noghès, who had set up the Automobile Club de Monaco with some of his friends. This offer of a Grand Prix was supported by Prince Louis II, and the Monégasque...

. He also made a brief appearance for the elite Bugatti
Automobiles E. Bugatti was a French car manufacturer founded in 1909 in Molsheim, Alsace, as a manufacturer of high-performance automobiles by Italian-born Ettore Bugatti....

 works team, but at the end of 1929 he abruptly withdrew from motorsport, to concentrate on the family wine growing business.

Rothschild made his first competition appearance in the Paris-Nice auto race of 1928, competing in a borrowed Hispano-Suiza
Hispano-Suiza was a Spanish automotive and engineering firm, best known for its luxury cars and aviation engines in the pre-World War II period of the twentieth century. In 1923, its French subsidiary became a semi-autonomous partnership with the parent company and is now part of the French SAFRAN...

. After purchasing a supercharged Bugatti
Automobiles E. Bugatti was a French car manufacturer founded in 1909 in Molsheim, Alsace, as a manufacturer of high-performance automobiles by Italian-born Ettore Bugatti....

, the ex Targa Florio factory type 37A (37317) T37, he adopted the pseudonym to protect his family. Georges Philippe made his first appearance at the 1928 Bugatti Grand Prix at Le Mans
Circuit de la Sarthe
The Circuit des 24 Heures, also known as Circuit de la Sarthe, located near Le Mans, France, is a semi-permanent race course most famous as the venue for the 24 Hours of Le Mans auto race. The track uses local roads that remain open to the public most of the year...

, a race solely for private Bugatti owners where he became second immediately after the winner Charles Dubonnet.

For 1929, Rothschild decided to upgrade to a full Grand Prix-specification Type 35C
Bugatti Type 35
The Type 35 was the most successful of the Bugatti racing models. Its version of the Bugatti arch-shaped radiator that had evolved from the more architectural one of the Bugatti Type 13 Brescia, was to become the one that the marque is most known for though even in the ranks of the various Type 35s...

. In fact, he was so enamoured with the vehicles, he ordered three. Using one of the new cars, Georges Philippe was entered into the Grand Prix d'Antibes. In a field that included Rene Dreyfus
René Dreyfus
René Dreyfus was a French driver who raced automobiles for 14 years in the 1920s and 1930s, the Golden Era of Grand Prix motor racing.-Early life:...

 and Philippe Étancelin
Philippe Étancelin
Philippe Étancelin was a French Grand Prix motor racing driver who joined the new Formula One circuit at its inception.-Biography:...

, both race winners many times over, Rothschild led the race until he crashed out on the 36th lap. A mere two weeks later, with the car rebuilt, Georges Philippe finished a highly creditable fourth at the inaugural Grand Prix Automobile de Monaco
Monaco Grand Prix
The Monaco Grand Prix is a Formula One race held each year on the Circuit de Monaco. Run since 1929, it is widely considered to be one of the most important and prestigious automobile races in the world, alongside the Daytona 500, Indianapolis 500, and the 24 Hours of Le Mans...

, behind winner William Grover-Williams
William Grover-Williams
William Charles Frederick Grover-Williams , also known as "W Williams", was a Grand Prix motor racing driver and special agent who worked for the Special Operations Executive inside France. He organized and coordinated the Chestnut network...


Continued improvement was finally rewarded when Georges Philippe won the Burgundy Grand Prix three weeks later, finishing ahead of Guy Bouriat in a second Rothschild T35C. However, he was unfortunate to retire from the following race while running sixth. The third of Rothschild's T35Cs was regularly campaigned by a rather curious acquaintance for a future Baron. A model and exotic dancer at the Casino de Paris
Casino de Paris
The Casino de Paris, located at 16, rue de Clichy, in the 9th arrondissement is one of the well known music halls of Paris, with a history dating back to the 18th century. Contrary to what the name might suggest, it is a performance venue, not a gambling house...

, Helene Delangle regularly took to the track under her professional psudonym Hellé Nice
Hellé Nice
Hellé Nice was a model, dancer, and a Grand Prix motor racing driver.- Early life and fast lifestyle :...


Nevertheless, Georges Philippe had attracted sufficient attention to be offered a factory drive alongside Monegasque star Louis Chiron
Louis Chiron
Louis Alexandre Chiron was a Grand Prix driver.-Career:As a teenager, Louis Chiron fell in love with cars and racing. He learned to drive at a young age and joined the Grand Prix circuit after World War I where he had been requisitioned from the artillery section to serve as a chauffeur...

. In his two races for the crack squad, Rothschild ran at the front of the field, before dropping back later in the race due to vehicle troubles. At the 1929 German Grand Prix, around the notorious Nürburgring
The Nürburgring is a motorsport complex around the village of Nürburg, Germany. It features a modern Grand Prix race track built in 1984, and a much longer old North loop track which was built in the 1920s around the village and medieval castle of Nürburg in the Eifel mountains. It is located about...

 Nordschlife, Georges Philippe was comfortably ahead of Chiron before contact with a wall caused damage to his Bugatti's axle, slowing the car and allowing Chiron to pass and take the victory.

Unfortuately, increasing fame was wearing Georges Philippes anonymity rather thin. His final appearance was in the 1930 24 Hours of Le Mans
1930 24 Hours of Le Mans
The 1930 24 Hours of Le Mans was the 8th Grand Prix of Endurance, and took place on 21 and 22 June 1930. The pairing of Odette Siko and Marguerite Mareuse would go in history as the first women to compete and finish in the race.-Official results:...

 where, driving an American Stutz
Stutz Motor Company
The Stutz Motor Company was a producer of luxury cars based in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. Production began in 1911 and continued through 1935. The marque reappeared in 1968 under the aegis of Stutz Motor Car of America, Inc., and with a newly defined modern retro-look. Although the company is...

, he failed to finish. After this Rothschild quietly laid Georges Philippe to rest, and returned to running Château Mouton Rothschild.

In 1935, Rothschild and his friend, Jean Rheims, who were sponsoring a bobsled team, refused to participate in the 1936 Winter Olympics at Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, protesting what they called the "persecution of Germans of Jewish religion."

Wine grower

Despite the time spent racing automobiles and producing the 1932 film Lac-aux-Dames, the first French "talkie" to gain international recognition (adapted from a novel by Vicki Baum
Vicki Baum
Hedwig Baum was an Austrian writer. She is known for Menschen im Hotel , one of her first international successes....

 and directed by Marc Allegret
Marc Allégret
Marc Allégret was a French screenwriter and film director.Born in Basel, Basel-Stadt, Switzerland, he was the elder brother of Yves Allégret. Marc was educated to be a lawyer. Allégret became André Gide's lover when he was fifteen and Gide was forty-seven...

, it had a script by Colette
Colette was the surname of the French novelist and performer Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette . She is best known for her novel Gigi, upon which Lerner and Loewe based the stage and film musical comedies of the same title.-Early life and marriage:Colette was born to retired military officer Jules-Joseph...

 and starred Jean-Pierre Aumont
Jean-Pierre Aumont
-Early life:Aumont was born Jean-Pierre Philippe Salomons in Paris, the son of Suzanne and Alexandre Salomons, owner of La Maison du Blanc . His mother's uncle was well-known stage actor Georges Berr. His father was from a Dutch Jewish family and his mother's family were French Jews...

 and Simone Simon
Simone Simon
Simone Thérèse Fernande Simon was a French film actress who began her film career in 1931.-Early life:Born in Béthune, Pas-de-Calais France, she was the daughter of Henri Louis Firmin Champmoynat, a French engineer, airplane pilot in World War II, who died in a concentration camp, and Erma Maria...

), the energetic Philippe de Rothschild still devoted his energies and innovation to Château Mouton Rothschild in Pauillac.

He was only twenty years old when he took over the operations of the Château Mouton Rothschild
Château Mouton Rothschild
Château Mouton Rothschild is a wine estate located in the village of Pauillac in the Médoc, 50 km north-west of the city of Bordeaux, France. Its red wine of the same name is regarded as one of the world's greatest clarets. Originally known as Château Brane-Mouton it was renamed by Nathaniel...

 vineyards and two years later, in 1924, came up with the unheard of idea of bottling the entire vintage at the Château, an idea that other producers of Premier Cru
First Growth
First Growth status refers to a classification of wines primarily from the Bordeaux region of France.-Bordeaux reds:The need for a classification of the best Bordeaux wines arose for the 1855 Exposition Universelle de Paris. The result was the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855, a list...

 wines soon copied. Previously, vineyards sold their wines in bulk, leaving the maturing, bottling, labeling and marketing to be handled by the wine merchants. Philippe de Rothschild's idea was to maintain control over the quality of his product and allow marketing of the brand name. Two years later, he developed a de facto price-fixing arrangement among other top Bordeaux producers.

Upon harvesting a crop he considered not up to the high standards of his vineyard, he chose not to sell that year's vintage under the Château label. In 1932 Philippe de Rothschild began to sell this second-string vintage as a good low-cost Bordeaux under the name "Mouton Cadet
Mouton Cadet
Mouton Cadet is the brand name of a popular range of modestly priced, generic Bordeaux wines, considered Bordeaux' most successful brand. Created by Baron Philippe de Rothschild of the Rothschild banking dynasty, the wine named after his premier cru vineyard Château Mouton Rothschild, Mouton Cadet...

". The product became so successful that he eventually had to purchase grapes from vineyard
A vineyard is a plantation of grape-bearing vines, grown mainly for winemaking, but also raisins, table grapes and non-alcoholic grape juice...

s throughout the Bordeaux region just to meet the demand. Today, Mouton Cadet is the number-one-selling red wine in the world.

In 1933 Philippe expanded the Mouton-Rothschild estates with the acquisition of the neighboring Château d'Armailhac
Château d'Armailhac
Château d'Armailhac, previously named Château Mouton-d'Armailhacq , Château Mouton-Baron Philippe , Mouton Baronne and Château Mouton-Baronne-Philippe , is a winery in the Pauillac appellation of the Bordeaux region of France...

. By the late 1930s, the wines of Mouton Rothschild were recognized as among the world's best. Nonetheless, the Mouton vineyard was still rated as a "Second Growth" as a result of the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855
Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855
The Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855 resulted from the 1855 Exposition Universelle de Paris, when Emperor Napoleon III requested a classification system for France's best Bordeaux wines which were to be on display for visitors from around the world...

 (reputedly due to the vintner's Anglo-Jewish heritage) and Philippe de Rothschild began a lifelong mission to change this judgment.

In 1934, Philippe de Rothschild married Elisabeth Pelletier de Chambure
Elisabeth de Rothschild
Elisabeth de Rothschild was a member by marriage of the wine-making branch of the Rothschild family....

 (1902–1945), the former wife of Jonkheer
Jonkheer is a Dutch honorific of nobility.-Honorific of nobility:"Jonkheer" or "Jonkvrouw" is literally translated as "young lord" or "young lady". In medieval times such a person was a young and unmarried son or daughter of a high ranking knight or nobleman...

 Marc de Becker-Rémy, a Belgian nobleman. They had two children: Philippine Mathilde Camille de Rothschild
Philippine de Rothschild
Baroness Philippine Mathilde Camille de Rothschild is the owner of the French winery Château Mouton Rothschild. She also has acted under the stage name Philippine Pascale....

 (born 22 November 1933) and Charles Henri de Rothschild (born and died 1938).

Rothschild's late-in-life memoirs (Milady Vine, written in collaboration with his companion, the British director Joan Littlewood
Joan Littlewood
Joan Maud Littlewood was a British theatre director, noted for her work in developing the left-wing Theatre Workshop...

) describe a marriage of great passion but also enormous tempestuousness and despair. The couple's difficulties increased when their only son was born tragically deformed and died soon after birth. They eventually separated, and the baron's wife reverted to her maiden name.

World War II

The outbreak of World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 had serious consequences for the entire Rothschild family, who were Jewish. Following the German occupation of France
German occupation of France in World War II
The Military Administration in France was an interim occupation authority established by Nazi Germany during World War II. It remained in existence from May 1940 to December 1944. As a result of the defeat of France and its Allies in the Battle of France, the French cabinet sought a cessation...

, Philippe de Rothschild's parents fled to the safety of Lausanne, Switzerland, and the Paris mansion where they had lived became the headquarters for the German Naval Command.

Although he was called up to serve in the French Air Force
French Air Force
The French Air Force , literally Army of the Air) is the air force of the French Armed Forces. It was formed in 1909 as the Service Aéronautique, a service arm of the French Army, then was made an independent military arm in 1933...

, the quick fall of France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 resulted in Philippe being arrested in Algeria
Algeria , officially the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria , also formally referred to as the Democratic and Popular Republic of Algeria, is a country in the Maghreb region of Northwest Africa with Algiers as its capital.In terms of land area, it is the largest country in Africa and the Arab...

 by the Vichy
Vichy France
Vichy France, Vichy Regime, or Vichy Government, are common terms used to describe the government of France that collaborated with the Axis powers from July 1940 to August 1944. This government succeeded the Third Republic and preceded the Provisional Government of the French Republic...

 government and the vineyard property seized. His French citizenship was revoked on 6 September 1940 for what The New York Times
The New York Times
The New York Times is an American daily newspaper founded and continuously published in New York City since 1851. The New York Times has won 106 Pulitzer Prizes, the most of any news organization...

 described as "having left France without official permission or a valid reason." Released from Vichy custody on 20 April 1941, Philippe de Rothschild made his way to England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, where he joined the Free French Forces
Free French Forces
The Free French Forces were French partisans in World War II who decided to continue fighting against the forces of the Axis powers after the surrender of France and subsequent German occupation and, in the case of Vichy France, collaboration with the Germans.-Definition:In many sources, Free...

 of General Charles de Gaulle
Charles de Gaulle
Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle was a French general and statesman who led the Free French Forces during World War II. He later founded the French Fifth Republic in 1958 and served as its first President from 1959 to 1969....

, earning a Croix de Guerre
Croix de guerre
The Croix de guerre is a military decoration of France. It was first created in 1915 and consists of a square-cross medal on two crossed swords, hanging from a ribbon with various degree pins. The decoration was awarded during World War I, again in World War II, and in other conflicts...

 medal. On his return to France following the Allies'
Allies of World War II
The Allies of World War II were the countries that opposed the Axis powers during the Second World War . Former Axis states contributing to the Allied victory are not considered Allied states...

 liberation, Philippe de Rothschild learned that, although his daughter was safe, the Gestapo
The Gestapo was the official secret police of Nazi Germany. Beginning on 20 April 1934, it was under the administration of the SS leader Heinrich Himmler in his position as Chief of German Police...

 had, on charges of attempting to cross a line of demarcation with a forged permit, deported his estranged wife in 1941 to Ravensbrück concentration camp
Ravensbrück concentration camp
Ravensbrück was a notorious women's concentration camp during World War II, located in northern Germany, 90 km north of Berlin at a site near the village of Ravensbrück ....

 where she died—the cause of her death remains unresolved—on March 23, 1945. Elisabeth Pelletier de Chambure
Elisabeth de Rothschild
Elisabeth de Rothschild was a member by marriage of the wine-making branch of the Rothschild family....

 was the only member of the Rothschilds to be killed in the holocaust.

After war

Devastated, Rothschild had to deal with problems at his vineyard as well. The departing German
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 army had done considerable damage to Chateau Mouton Rothschild and the property was in need of considerable repair. Together with dedicated employees, he put his energy into restoring the vineyard and by the early 1950s was once again producing wine.

At the same time, the multi-talented Rothschild returned to participation in the theatrical world, teaming up with Gaston Bonheur to write in both English and French the play Lady Chatterley's Lover
L'Amant de lady Chatterley
Lady Chatterley's Lover is a 1955 French drama film directed by Marc Allégret who co-wrote screenplay with Philippe de Rothschild and Gaston Bonheur, based on novel "Lady Chatterley's Lover" by D.H. Lawrence.-Cast:...

. Based on the D. H. Lawrence
D. H. Lawrence
David Herbert Richards Lawrence was an English novelist, poet, playwright, essayist, literary critic and painter who published as D. H. Lawrence. His collected works represent an extended reflection upon the dehumanising effects of modernity and industrialisation...

 novel, their play was later made into a motion picture starring Danielle Darrieux
Danielle Darrieux
Danielle Yvonne Marie Antoinette Darrieux is a French actress and singer, who has appeared in more than 110 films since 1931. She is one of France's great movie stars and her eight-decade career is among the longest in film history....

. In 1952 Rothschild and Bonheur wrote the script for the film La Demoiselle et son revenant. Philippe de Rothschild was an accomplished poet and in 1952 his poem Vendage inspired Darius Milhaud
Darius Milhaud
Darius Milhaud was a French composer and teacher. He was a member of Les Six—also known as The Group of Six—and one of the most prolific composers of the 20th century. His compositions are influenced by jazz and make use of polytonality...

 to write a three-act ballet for the Paris Opéra. He also translated Elizabethan poetry and the plays of Christopher Fry
Christopher Fry
Christopher Fry was an English playwright. He is best known for his verse dramas, notably The Lady's Not for Burning, which made him a major force in theatre in the 1940s and 1950s.-Early life:...


In 1954, Rothschild married a longtime mistress, Pauline Fairfax Potter (1908–1976), a Paris-born American who had been the head fashion designer at Hattie Carnegie
Hattie Carnegie
Hattie Carnegie was a fashion entrepreneur based in New York City from the 1920s to the 1960s. She was born in Vienna, Austria-Hungary as Henrietta Kanengeiser....

. After their marriage, she used her aesthetic talents to help restore an old storage building on the estate, converting it into a magnificent home, and became known as a tastemaker in the worlds of fashion and interior design.

In 1973, Château Mouton Rothschild became the only French vineyard to ever achieve reclassification to First Growth
First Growth
First Growth status refers to a classification of wines primarily from the Bordeaux region of France.-Bordeaux reds:The need for a classification of the best Bordeaux wines arose for the 1855 Exposition Universelle de Paris. The result was the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855, a list...

, thanks to decades of relentless lobbying. Subsequently, the owner of Château d'Yquem
Château d'Yquem
Château d'Yquem is a Premier Cru Supérieur wine from the Sauternes, Gironde region in the southern part of the Bordeaux vineyards known as Graves. In the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855, Château d'Yquem was the only Sauternes given this rating, indicating its perceived superiority...

 sued unsuccessfully to have the reclassification reversed as illegitimate. After his Mouton Rothschild lost to a California wine
California wine
California wine has a long and continuing history, and in the late twentieth century became recognized as producing some of the world's finest wine. While wine is made in all fifty U.S. states, up to 90% of American wine is produced in the state...

 in the Judgment of Paris, he "phoned one of the judges and asked haughtily, 'What are you doing to my wines? It took me forty years to become classified as First Growth!'"

Rothschild purchased Château Clerc Milon, a fifth-growth classified vineyard strategically located next to his own property. After achieving his lifelong goal with the 1973 upgrading of Chateau Mouton Rothschild to Premier Cru status, and after the historic results of the Paris Wine Tasting of 1976, he began looking beyond France for wine-growing opportunities and in 1980 announced a joint venture with the respected American wine grower, Robert Mondavi
Robert Mondavi
Robert Gerald Mondavi was a leading California vineyard operator whose technical improvements and marketing strategies brought worldwide recognition for the wines of the Napa Valley in California. From an early period, Mondavi aggressively promoted labeling wines varietally rather than...

, to form the Opus One Winery
Opus One Winery
Opus One Winery is a winery in Oakville, California, USA. The wine was called napamedoc until 1982 when it was named Opus One. The winery was founded as a joint venture between Baron Philippe de Rothschild of Château Mouton Rothschild and Robert Mondavi to create a single Bordeaux style blend based...

 in Oakville, California
California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...


In 1997, under the direction of Rohschild's daughter Philippine, Château Mouton-Rothschild teamed up with Concha y Toro
Concha y Toro
Concha y Toro is the largest producer of wines from Latin America and is one of the global leaders in its field. It is headquartered in Santiago, Chile.Concha y Toro Winery is located in Chile. It comprises 8.720 ha...

 of Chile
Chile ,officially the Republic of Chile , is a country in South America occupying a long, narrow coastal strip between the Andes mountains to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far...

 to produce a Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the world's most widely recognized red wine grape varieties. It is grown in nearly every major wine producing country among a diverse spectrum of climates from Canada's Okanagan Valley to Lebanon's Beqaa Valley...

 based, Bordeaux
Bordeaux wine
A Bordeaux wine is any wine produced in the Bordeaux region of France. Average vintages produce over 700 million bottles of Bordeaux wine, ranging from large quantities of everyday table wine, to some of the most expensive and prestigious wines in the world...

-style red wine in a new winery built in Chile's Maipo Valley, the Almaviva.

Baron Philippe de Rothschild remained active in the wine business until he died in 1988 at the age of 85, whereupon its reins were taken up by his daughter, who has also achieved acclaim as a theatre actress under the stage name
Stage name
A stage name, also called a showbiz name or screen name, is a pseudonym used by performers and entertainers such as actors, wrestlers, comedians, and musicians.-Motivation to use a stage name:...

 "Philippine Pascal".


As an offshoot of self-bottling, Philippe also came up with the idea of having his labels designed by famous artists. In 1946, this became a prominent and traditional part of the vineyard's image, with labels created by great painters and sculptors such as Jean Cocteau
Jean Cocteau
Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, playwright, artist and filmmaker. His circle of associates, friends and lovers included Kenneth Anger, Pablo Picasso, Jean Hugo, Jean Marais, Henri Bernstein, Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel, Erik Satie, María...

, Leonor Fini
Leonor Fini
Leonor Fini was an Argentine surrealist painter.-Life and work:Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, she was raised in Trieste, Italy. She moved to Milan at the age of 17, and then to Paris, in either 1931 or 1932...

, Henry Moore
Henry Moore
Henry Spencer Moore OM CH FBA was an English sculptor and artist. He was best known for his semi-abstract monumental bronze sculptures which are located around the world as public works of art....

, Marie Laurencin
Marie Laurencin
Marie Laurencin was a French painter and printmaker. -Biography:Laurencin was born in Paris, where she was raised by her mother and lived much of her life. At 18, she studied porcelain painting in Sèvres...

, Georges Braque
Georges Braque
Georges Braque[p] was a major 20th century French painter and sculptor who, along with Pablo Picasso, developed the art style known as Cubism.-Early Life:...

, Salvador Dalí
Salvador Dalí
Salvador Domènec Felip Jacint Dalí i Domènech, Marquis de Púbol , commonly known as Salvador Dalí , was a prominent Spanish Catalan surrealist painter born in Figueres,Spain....

, Jacques Villon
Jacques Villon
Jacques Villon was a French cubist painter and printmaker.-Early life:Born Gaston Emile Duchamp in Damville, Eure, in the Haute-Normandie region of France, he came from a prosperous and artistically inclined family...

, Pierre Alechinsky
Pierre Alechinsky
Pierre Alechinsky is a Belgian artist. He has lived and worked in France since 1951. His work is related to Tachisme, Abstract expressionism, and Lyrical Abstraction.Alechinsky was born in Brussels...

, Joan Miró
Joan Miró
Joan Miró i Ferrà was a Spanish Catalan painter, sculptor, and ceramicist born in Barcelona.Earning international acclaim, his work has been interpreted as Surrealism, a sandbox for the subconscious mind, a re-creation of the childlike, and a manifestation of Catalan pride...

, Marc Chagall
Marc Chagall
Marc Chagall Art critic Robert Hughes referred to Chagall as "the quintessential Jewish artist of the twentieth century."According to art historian Michael J...

, Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso
Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso known as Pablo Ruiz Picasso was a Spanish expatriate painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer, one of the greatest and most influential artists of the...

, César
César Baldaccini
César Baldaccini , usually called César was a noted French sculptor.César was at the forefront of the Nouveau Réalisme movement with his radical compressions , expansions , and fantastic representations of animals and insects.- Biography :He...

, Jean-Paul Riopelle
Jean-Paul Riopelle
Jean-Paul Riopelle, was a painter and sculptor from Quebec, Canada.-Biography:Born in Montreal, he studied under Paul-Émile Borduas in the 1940s and was a member of Les Automatistes movement. He was one of the signers of the Refus global manifesto...

, Andy Warhol
Andy Warhol
Andrew Warhola , known as Andy Warhol, was an American painter, printmaker, and filmmaker who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art...

, and other notables.

In 1962 at Mouton the Rothschilds created the Museum of Wine in Art; here a priceless collection of art works covering three millennia of wine are on display, including original art by Pablo Picasso and rare glassware.
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