Dignified and thoughtful, Christian Moueix is the gentleman of Bordeaux's Right Bank. Moueix's reserved nature is understandable—his father was a commanding presence, a poor outsider who built the Right Bank's most important négociant business from nothing. Christian studied agricultural engineering in Paris and enology at the University of California, Davis. Upon returning to Bordeaux in 1973, at age 27, he had a different vision for the future.
When wine drinkers abandoned value-priced Bordeaux for lower-cost wines from emerging regions, Moueix shifted the négociant's focus to top Grand Cru wines. He sold underperforming estates to concentrate on a handful of wineries in Pomerol—names like Trotanoy, La-Fleur Pétrus and Hosanna. He expanded to St.-Emilion, creating Château Belair-Monange in 2008. He also served as managing director of Pétrus for more than 20 years.
Moueix has always had a laser focus on vineyards and terroir. He was one of the first in Bordeaux to do green harvesting. In 1982, he seized the opportunity to become a partner in Napa's famed Napanook Vineyard, the heart of the classic Inglenook wines, and created a winery called Dominus; he has been sole proprietor since 1994. In addition, he and his wife, Cherise, have built a world-class collection of contemporary art. Moueix earned Wine Spectator's Distinguished Service Award in 2011.
Watch Christian Moueix in the vineyards of Trotanoy