From the cellar of Faringdon House, formerly owned by Lord Berners and Robert Heber-Percy.
- Very damp-affected and not a pretty sight but correct for something that has been stored in a cool, damp country house cellar for half a century.
- The Mouton label format from 1945: Artwork at top; the ram emblem; declaration of the number of bottles produced; the proprietor's signature; the name of the wine; the year – all present and correct.
- The label should have two separate pieces, with the top “V” piece fractionally less wide than the main label – present and correct.
- From 1945 to 1958 the vintage appears below the ram emblem – present and correct, though here it’s damp-affected and with a small tear.
Glass bottle inspection
- Château Mouton Rothschild 1945 was bottled in a green, broad-shouldered bottle with the shoulders slightly wider than the base, so that the bottle tapers slightly towards the base – present and correct.
- The “75 cl” is seen on authentic examples.
Bottle fill level or ullage inspection
- The wine is at top shoulder level, which is a normal and a good level for wines over 15 years old. For wines over 20 years old, this demonstrates excellent storage conditions. For a 73-year old wine, it’s exceptional and shows the benefits of having been stored in a cool, damp country house cellar for half a century.
- All present and correct: Faded red, embossed at the top with “MOUTON ROTHSCHILD MEDOC” in circular uppercase and an “arrows” emblem in the centre, surrounded by an embossed circular line; “MIS EN BOUTEILLE AU CHATEAU” is embossed on the capsule at the top of the neck; below this is a very faded embossed logo.
If you approach old and valuable bottles with diligence, integrity and – especially – humility, you will rarely get it wrong.