The California winemaker The Chalone Wine Group said yesterday that the proposal by Domaines Barons de Rothschild to acquire all of Chalone's outstanding publicly held shares has been extended to August 20th.

DBR in a joint venture with Constellation Brands and Huneeus Vintners is offering US$9.25 per share in cash.

The Chalone Wine Group is a Napa-based company specializing in premium red and white varietal wines. In California, the company owns and operates Acacia Vineyard in the Carneros area of Napa County, and Provenance Vineyards, Hewitt Vineyard and Jade Mountain in Napa County; Chalone Vineyard in Monterey County; and Moon Mountain Vineyard, Dynamite Vineyards and Orogeny Vineyards in Sonoma County; and Echelon Vineyards in San Miguel

In conjunction with its 50% joint-venture partner, Paragon Vineyard Co., the Company also owns and operates Edna Valley Vineyard in San Luis Obispo County. In Washington State, the company owns and operates Sagelands Vineyard and Canoe Ridge Vineyard.

In the Bordeaux region of France, the Company owns 23.5% of the Fourth-Growth estate of Chateau Duhart-Milon, in partnership with Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite), which owns the other 76.5%.

In May, Domaines Barons de Rothschild (DBR), Huneeus Vintners and Constellation Brands announced they were proposing the formation of a new independent company (joint venture) to create what would be one of the world's leading luxury wines companies.  The deal included the acquisition of the Chalone Wine Group.

Under the terms of the joint venture, Constellation Brands and Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) will provide the cash funding for the purchase of the Chalone shares.

Upon completion of the transaction, Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) will transfer to the new joint venture all of the premium assets and brands of The Chalone Wine Group, The Huneeus Family will contribute the Quintessa winery, vineyards and brand, and Constellation Brands will contribute the prestigious Oakville vineyard owned by Franciscan Estates, Constellation Brands' fine wine company. 

Also, as part of the proposed joint venture, Domaines Barons de Rothschild (Lafite) would develop, in Napa Valley, the first estate to produce a wine under its guidance.