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Bordeaux 2016: Will Politics Impact The Vintage?

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The big wine story is taking place in Bordeaux, where several thousand enthusiastic merchants and journalists are being welcomed. They’re swooping in from around the globe for en primeur, the region’s famous annual spring ritual. (Some call it a circus.)

Bordeaux 2016 En Primeur Begins To High Demand

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Olivier Bernard, head of the Union des Grands Crus (UGC), which is hosting Bordeaux 2016 en primeur tastings this week alongside individual estates, said that member estates have already seen 6,500 people come to taste. That’s around 2,000 more than normal at this stage.

Sotheby’s Withdraws Magnum Of 1959 Romanée-Conti From Upcoming Sale Pending Investigation

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Auction house Sotheby’s has withdrawn a magnum of 1959 Romanée-Conti from its next London sale after a query surrounding a strip label it carries. The magnum of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti was due to be sold during the London leg of the ‘A Monumental Collection from the Cellars of a Connoisseur’ sale on 29 March.

A New Look Coming To Bordeaux?

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Traditional wine labels from the Bordeaux region of France are changing, slowly. Inspect a half-dozen labels: many include an image—drawn or photographed—of a stately country manor, often with vines planted out front. These less than exciting and hardly eye-catching images focus on the château (plural: châteaux)—the residence associated with a vineyard.

Château Latour Goes Organic

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Organic wines are becoming more and more popular. Even the ultra-traditional Bordelais are doing it.

Spotlight On: 2009 La Conseillante

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The competition between the 2009, 2005 and 2000 La Conseillante will be interesting to follow over the next twenty years. There was more of a selection process at this estate in 2009 than there was in 2000, resulting in a beautiful Pomerol offering notes of mulberries, sweet cherries, spring flowers, raspberries and truffles. The color is a healthy deep plum/ruby/purple and the wine is medium to full-bodied with silky tannins, a broad, layered mouthfeel and wonderful freshness as well as length. This gorgeous, complex, Burgundian-styled Pomerol will be drinkable in 4-6 years and should keep for 30-40. (The 1970 is still alive and that was not nearly as well made as the 2009.)

Who Will Take Parker’s Throne?

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Despite Robert Parker’s recent retirement from reviewing Bordeaux, his scores continue to have a profound impact on price. With Parker’s influence likely to decline as time goes on, there has been considerable discussion around what or who will influence the market next. Will there be an heir to Parker’s throne, or will a system based on consensus or average scores emerge as the market’s new barometer of wine quality in Bordeaux?

Spotlight On: 2015 Cheval Blanc

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The 2015 Cheval Blanc represents the entire vineyard this year, since there is no Le Petit Cheval (two plots that did not meet requirements were not included in any blend). A blend of 45% Cabernet Franc/Cabernet Sauvignon and 55% Merlot, matured in 100% new oak, it has a very complex bouquet, subtle and tightly wound, very precise with dark berry fruit, hints of graphite, minerals and a hint of black pepper, perhaps a little spicier than recent vintages. The palate is medium-bodied with extraordinarily fine tannin. Beautifully balanced, perfectly controlled, this Cheval Blanc gently builds in the mouth, but remains strict and precise. The Cabernet Franc here is very expressive (though apparently the Merlot was showier prior to malolactic). This is an intellectual Cheval Blanc, thoroughly enjoyable, but it will need 10-12 years to really show its pedigree. A profound wine in the making, it will rank with the great wines of the past. – Neil Martin (March 23, 2016)

American Billionaire Buys Three Bordeaux Châteaux

Chateau Moya New Owner

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Thomas Sullivan, billionaire founder of Lumber Liquidators and Cabinets to Go in the US, has bought just under 30 hectares of vines across three Bordeaux Right Bank estates.

Spotlight On: 2009 Haut-Brion

2009 haut-brion

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What a blockbuster effort! Atypically powerful, one day, the 2009 Haut-Brion may be considered to be the 21st century version of the 1959. It is an extraordinarily complex, concentrated effort made from a blend of 46% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 14% Cabernet Franc with the highest alcohol ever achieved at this estate, 14.3%. Even richer than the perfect 1989, with similar technical numbers although slightly higher extract and alcohol, it offers up a sensational perfume of subtle burning embers, unsmoked cigar tobacco, charcoal, black raspberries, wet gravel, plums, figs and blueberries. There is so much going on in the aromatics that one almost hesitates to stop smelling it. However, when it hits the palate, it is hardly a letdown. This unctuously textured, full-bodied 2009 possesses low acidity along with stunning extract and remarkable clarity for a wine with a pH close to 4.0. The good news is that there are 10,500 cases of the 2009, one of the most compelling examples of Haut-Brion ever made. It requires a decade of cellaring and should last a half century or more. Readers who have loved the complexity of Haut-Brion should be prepared for a bigger, richer, more massive wine, but one that does not lose any of its prodigious aromatic attractions. – Robert Parker Jr. (2012)

Spotlight On: 2009 Montrose

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Harvested between September 17 and October 5, this wine seems always open for business, so to speak, much like the great 1982s. The summer of 2009 was very hot and dry, which got the harvest off to a reasonably early start. The blend was 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 5% Cabernet Franc and 1% Petit Verdot. Jean Bernard Delmas’ goal was to find perfect equilibrium between freshness and concentration, given its incredible opulence and the voluptuous character this vintage offered. That’s what this wine has in abundance. With an astounding dense purple color, the wine has velvety, sweet tannins, and an extremely open-knit and opulent blueberry, blackberry and creme de cassis nose. There is scorched earth, vanilla and, again, telltale licorice and spice. It is unctuously textured – thicker and juicier than the 2010 and more forward. This wine should come into its own in another five years. And again, it has at least 50+ years of aging potential. – Robert Parker Jr. (2014)

Spotlight On: 2009 La Mission Haut Brion

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A candidate for the wine of the vintage, the 2009 La Mission-Haut-Brion stood out as one of the most exceptional young wines I had ever tasted from barrel, and its greatness has been confirmed in the bottle. A remarkable effort from the Dillon family, this is another large-scaled La Mission that tips the scales at 15% alcohol. A blend of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot (47% of each) and the rest Cabernet Franc, it exhibits an opaque purple color as well as a magnificent bouquet of truffles, scorched earth, blackberry and blueberry liqueur, subtle smoke and spring flowers. The wine’s remarkable concentration offers up an unctuous/viscous texture, a skyscraper-like mouthfeel, sweet, sumptuous, nearly over-the-top flavors and massive density. Perhaps a once-in-a-lifetime La Mission-Haut-Brion, the 2009 will take its place alongside the many great wines made here since the early 1920s. The good news is that there are nearly 6,000 cases of the 2009. It should last for 50-75+ years. Given the wine’s unctuosity and sweetness of the tannin, I would have no problem drinking it in about 5-6 years. – Robert Parker Jr. (2012)

Pape Clement 2012 On The Rise?

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One year ago it was observed that Pape Clement 2012 offered relative value as one of the top five Bordeaux reds in Robert Parker’s in-bottle report of the 2012 vintage. He upgraded it to 97 points from a barrel range of 92-95 points and described it as “a candidate for near-perfection”.

Bordeaux 2005 Retrospective: Reaping The Benefits One Year Later

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A year after Robert Parker’s much anticipated retrospective of the Bordeaux 2005 vintage, which estates have profited the most? It would appear that while some wines have continued to roll on since last summer’s report, not all of the 2005s have experienced even a small boost in price.

Haut Brion 2012 On The Move

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While only a handful of Bordeaux 2015s have traded since release, the vintage is nonetheless of interest to merchants. Margaux, Canon and Lafite 2015 – which has traded – are the most searched for wines on Liv-ex over the last month.

Is There A Coming Burgundy Apocalypse?

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For years, vintages of Burgundy have been smaller and smaller, while prices have gone up and up. Rain, floods, and hailstorms have decimated vineyards since 2010, especially in the Côte de Beaune (the southern part of the famous limestone strip that’s home to the most famous vineyards). Growers invested in weird anti-hail devices, but, alas, they haven’t worked. Regional businesses are facing a crisis of how to survive.

Sotheby’s To Host An Ex-Cellar Sale Featuring Wines From La Mission Haut-Brion

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Sotheby’s will host an ex-cellar sale featuring wines from La Mission Haut-Brion in New York this October. The sale will cover 270 lots, with wines spanning 1916 to 2012 and including some of the estate’s rare white wine which is produced in tiny quantities.

Perfection For 2015 Cheval Blanc?

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Cheval Blanc 2015 has been released at $611 per bottle ex-negociant, up 50% on 2014 ($407). It is being offered by the international trade at $7,642 per 12×75. This is 52.9% higher than the opening price of the 2014 ($4,998).

Rare Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Sold At Sotheby’s Auction

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Six bottles of 1926 Vosne-Romanée ‘Les Gaudichots’ from Domaine de la Romanée-Conti have sold for over $70,000 at Sotheby’s recent London sale. DRC dominated the sale, held on 15 June, with buyers focusing on half cases of 1990 Romanée-Conti, La Tâche and Richebourg.

Mouton Rothschild 2015 Released

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Mouton Rothschild 2015 has been released at $432 per bottle ex-negociant, up 60% on 2014. It is being offered by the international trade at $6,652 per 12×750. This is 83.6% higher than the opening price for the 2014.

Bordeaux 2015: Most Expensive Since 2010

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Price increases for the Bordeaux 2015 vintage compared with 2014 are averaging about 15 percent so far and in some cases have reached 20 percent or more, often making the critically acclaimed new wines just being released to buyers the most expensive in the market since the 2010 crop.

Lafleur 2015 Released: A “Standout” Of The Vintage

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Lafleur 2015 has been released and is being offered by merchants at $6520 per 12×750.

Pape Clement 2015 Released

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Pape Clement 2015 has been released at €58.8 per bottle ex-negociant, up 18.1% on the 2014 release price of €49.8. It is being offered by the international trade for £625 ($902.36) per 12×75. This places it above the other four most recent vintages, but represents a significant discount on 2005, 2009 and 2010.

‘Sun’s Come Out’ for Bordeaux 2015

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The quality of the 2015 vintage being presented to merchants over the past month makes it feel like the “the sun’s come out” for the Bordeaux region, according to Robert Wilmers, M&T Bank Corp. chairman and chief executive officer and owner of Chateau Haut Bailly, a grand cru classe wine estate south of the city.

A New Dawn For Bordeaux, Or Is The Sun Setting On En Primeur?

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It started innocuously enough with a headline on Monday morning in the local Sud Ouest newspaper that proclaimed the Bordeaux 2015 vintage was the ‘last chance to save the en primeur system’.

April Auctions Announced By Sotheby’s And Christie’s

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Sotheby’s sale on 13 April will feature a “superb collection” of claret from the 1980s and 1990s, featuring 1990 La Mission Haut-Brion, 1995 Mouton Rothschild, 1996 Haut-Brion, 1986 Pichon Comtesse de Lalande and 1998 Latour and Lynch Bages among much more.

Sotheby’s To Auction 20,000 Bottles From William Koch’s Cellar

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On May 19, 20,000 bottles of wine from William Koch’s cellar will go to auction at Sotheby’s. The blockbuster sale, spread across three days (May 19–21), represents close to half of the billionaire’s total collection and was acquired over the course of nearly 40 years.

Château Latour 2000 and Les Forts de Latour 2009 Release

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Latour released its latest set of wines on Tuesday 22 March, as part of its new strategy of putting mature wines onto the market rather than selling them before bottling under the Bordeaux en primeur system.

Bordeaux 2012: On A Roll

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Bordeaux 2012 was not an immediate success on the secondary market. Between En Primeur release and this time last year – when the wines had become physical – the overall value of those within the Bordeaux 500 index had dropped by 2.6%. Trading activity was also low: the vintage had accounted for just 2.9% of Bordeaux trade.

Château Angelus Managing Director, “I Don’t Want Our Wine In Funds”

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Stéphanie de Boüard, managing director of Château Angelus, is battling to keep the estate’s wines away from investment funds and into consumers’ glasses.

Is A Burgundy Wine Shortage Looming?

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Burgundy wines may become even more difficult to find because of vine disease and smaller harvests from aging vineyards, according to a new report by the region’s wine council. While demand for Burgundy is strong, and prices for top wines remain high, overall harvest size is set to shrink – and not just due to the perennial threat of hail storms.

Lafite 2003 Leads Liv-ex Trading by Value in Past Week

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Chateau Lafite Rothschild 2003 was the most traded wine by value on the London-based Liv-ex wine market in the week to Feb. 11, closely followed by Chateau Latour 2009, according to data from the exchange on its market blog.

Bordeaux 2006: The Ten Year Tasting

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The first release came a little earlier this month from Pontet-Canet which released a tranche of its 2006 vintage and late last week Montrose offered négociants some of its 100-point 2009, a parcel of ‘R’ de Rieussec has also been released albeit to less comment.

Liv-ex 100 Index Gains 1.1% In January

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The Liv-ex 100 gained 1.1% in January to close on 240.87. The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 index also moved up, increasing by 1.7% over the month to close on 269.17. The Liv-ex 100 has a history of moving up in the first quarter only to end the year down, as was the case in 2011, 2012 and 2013. 2014 saw a reversal of this pattern while 2015 looked altogether more confused. It is therefore too early to call whether this positive movement will be sustained.

Petit Mouton Continues To Drive Second Wines

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The second wines have been outperforming the First Growths, thanks in part to their ability to offer access to these big brands at lower price points. Petit Mouton in particular showed a strong performance: in 2015 it was the biggest riser of the Bordeaux 500 index, gaining 8.3%, no doubt benefitting from ‘brand Mouton Rothschild’ – number one in the Power 100 – of which it forms a part.

Bordeaux Copyrights 1855 Under European Law

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Bordeaux châteaux making up the 1855 classification have copyrighted the term ‘1855’ in the European Union to deter others from misusing it in a wine context.

Fine Wine Outperforms Other Indices in 2015

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The Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 ended last year a tantalizing, frustrating 0.1% behind where it closed in 2014.

Has Stability Arrived For Fine Wine Market?

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For the first time since July 2010 the bid:offer ratio on Liv-ex (the total value of bids on the Liv-ex exchange divided by the total value of offers) has risen past 100%, a positive sign for fine wine prices as, historically, a bid:offer ratio of over 50% indicates an uptrend in the market – and price stability.

Case of DRC Makes HK$1.5M

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A case of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti’s Romanée-Conti 1990 has made HK$1.5 million at Zachys’ sale in Hong Kong. The price paid for the sought-after Burgundy is the highest price paid for a case of wine since 2012 the house reported. The 12 bottles had been estimated to realise a possible HK$1.9m but fell slightly short of this, making HK$1,592,500 in the end.

Fine Wine Market Resists Great Fall of China

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The Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 index closed 2015 largely unchanged from where it started a year earlier at just 0.1% below its December 2014 close. However, with most financial markets coming under considerable pressure in the second half of the year, the Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 fared relatively better than many other financial assets and physical commodities.

Is The 1855 Bordeaux Classification Still Relevant Today?

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photo: Chateau Margaux

Liv-ex Releases The 2015 Power 100

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Liv-ex has released the tenth edition of the Liv-ex Power 100 – the annual list of the most powerful brands in the fine wine market.

Is The Price Of Rarity Justified?

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As Burgundy’s prices continue to either stay high or get higher as top Bordeaux gets cheaper, how high is too high for Burgundy?

‘Sale Of The Decade’ To End Sotheby’s Season

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Sotheby’s will end its 2015 season with “one of the finest wine collections” it has offered in London “in over a decade”.

Has The Fine Wine Market Balanced Out?

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In 2010, as the fine wine bull market neared its peak, Bordeaux accounted for 95.7% of trade by value on Liv-ex. It was the year of the 2009 En Primeur release, and that vintage alone accounted for 13.2% of trade. Other regions barely registered: Champagne, the second strongest, took just 1.2%.

Hopes High For “Magnificent” Bordeaux Vintage

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Producers in Bordeaux are gearing up for what they hope will be a “magnificent” 2015 vintage, with one winemaker describing it as a “euphoric bounce back from the difficulties of 2013”. Releasing a statement detailing its assessment of the 2015 vintage today, the Bordeaux Wine Council (CIVB) said “ideal weather conditions”, with a cool winter, warm and dry spring, followed by a dry and sunny September.

Bordeaux 2015 Hype Continues To Grow

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Reports that Bordeaux may be on the cusp of a great vintage in 2015 have been strongly supported by one of the region’s leading negociants. Renaud Ruer, himself a winemaker in the past, concedes, however, that some appellations had better weather conditions than others and likens the harvest to a north-south divide rather than a Left or Right Bank year.

Bordeaux 2015 Harvest Is In The Books

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The Bordeaux 2015 harvest is now complete – and expectations for the quality of the vintage are high. With the last of the Cabernets having been picked in Saint Emilion during the penultimate week of October, the Bordeaux 2015 harvest finally drew to a close. It seems a long time since the first bunches of Sauvignon were snipped from the vines in Pessac-Léognan at the end of August.

Fine Wine Drifts In October, Still In Positive Territory For Year

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Trading activity on the Liv-ex exchange reached its highest level since March but the Fine Wine 100 index went down 0.6%, following a flat August and September. Nonetheless, the index is still in positive territory on the year-to-date, up 0.7%.

Harvest 2015: Northern Rhône Winemakers Report A Very Promising Vintage

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Across the Northern Hemisphere, winemakers in many regions are reporting one of the earlier grape harvests they’ve seen. They’re scrambling to pick fruit and find tank space.

Wines Under Threat As Bordeaux Hit By Rising Temperatures

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This summer was a scorcher in France, the second hottest on record. For Bordeaux wine growers, those searing temperatures were the latest reminder that global warming is threatening to upend their world.

Bordeaux 2009 & 2010: Equal, Yet Unequal?

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A number of Bordeaux estates hold exactly the same score for their 2009 and 2010 vintages yet the pricing for both is rarely equal. Liv-ex recently pointed out the price disparity between the ’09 and ’10 vintages of Château Montrose where, despite both having 100-points from The Wine Advocate, the 2009 remains 12% more expensive than the 2010.

Château Margaux 1900-2010 Direct From The Cellars: A Celebration of the Mentzelopoulos Era

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On 17 October 2015 in New York, Sotheby’s Wine will present Château Margaux 1900-2010 Direct From The Cellars: A Celebration of the Mentzelopoulos Era.

Lesser-Known Bordeaux On The Move

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First growth prices have fallen 39% since the market peaked in 2011. The last year has seen some recovery, with the Fine Wine 50 index rising 0.94%, yet it is undeniable that the headline numbers are negative. But are the first growths an accurate representation of the whole Bordeaux market?

Bordeaux On Track For Best Vintage Since 2010

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Château Cheval Blanc

Liv-ex 100 runs flat in September

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The Liv-ex 100 Index ran flat in September, closing on 241.65 (0.00%). It is up 1.3% year to date. The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 also ran flat, closing the month on 269.04 (-0.03%).

Sotheby’s First ‘White Glove’ Sale Nets £1 million

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Auction house Sotheby’s held its first ever “white glove” auction in London earlier this month, making over £1 million. Featuring the collection from a single-owner, the sale is referred to as “white glove” because it was 100% sold by both lot and value.

Bordeaux First Growths: Haut Brion On The Move

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Throughout the China-led bull market, Lafite Rothschild dominated trade on the Exchange: during one week in July 2010 the Chateau represented 48% – nearly half – of all trading activity by value. Prices were flying and in November 2010 Lafite commanded an average of a 130% premium over other First Growths in the secondary market. At that time Lafite 2008, which was released with the Chinese number eight – a symbol of good fortune – etched onto the bottle, was trading for as high as £14,450 per 12×75.

Graham Lyons Cellar Sale Complete

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The final part of Graham Lyons’ fine wine collection was 100% sold by Zachys in Hong Kong last week and realized over HK$31 million.

Will 2015 Be A Legendary Bordeaux Vintage?

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Should dry, sunny conditions remain in Bordeaux, this year’s vintage could be an exceptional harvest – as good as the legendary 1982, according to Baron Philippe de Rothschild MD Philippe Dhalluin.

Fine Wine Holds Steady In August

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The Liv-ex 100 index gained 0.09% in August to close on 241.64, regaining some of the ground lost last month. The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 also edged up, gaining 0.2%.

Bordeaux 2015: White Wine Harvest To Begin Next Week

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Chateau Haut-Brion said it was likely to begin its Bordeaux 2015 harvest for Sauvignon Blanc and Sauvignon Gris at the end of next week, but a final decision was yet to be taken.
A summer heatwave is expected to cause a relatively early wine harvest across many northern hemisphere regions in 2015, from Piedmont and Rioja to Napa Valley in California and British Columbia in Canada.

Rare Selections of Burgundy and Bordeaux Up For Auction in September

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The third and final sale from the cellar of Graham Lyons has been announced. Lyons is known internationally for his meticulous collecting and with particular focus on some of the rarest collections of Burgundy and Bordeaux in existence.

Is Pape Clement One of the Most Undervalued Wines in the 2012 Bordeaux Vintage?

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Rated in the top five wines of the vintage by Robert Parker this May with 97-points, he labelled the Pape Clement an “iconic” example from the estate in what is quickly becoming apparently the most under-appreciated vintage from Bordeaux since the 2008s.

Italian Regions More Traded Than Burgundy

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Italy’s regions have leap-frogged Burgundy to become the second most widely traded fine wines on Liv-ex so far this year.

Is Now the Time to Buy a Case of Château Lafite?

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In 2011, Château Lafite Rothschild’s wines were riding high, the darlings of Chinese buyers and the auction market.

Vieux Chateau Certan 2010 Climbs to 18-Month Liv-Ex High

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A 12-bottle case of 2010 wine from Vieux Chateau Certan, an estate in the Pomerol region of Bordeaux, sold for 2,111 pounds ($3,300) on the Liv-ex wine market in the past week, the vintage’s highest level in 18 months.

Liv-ex Updates Indices

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Liv-ex the fine wine marketplace has announced a number of updates to its various indices that track the world’s fine wine labels.

Lafite 2010 Falls to Lowest This year on Liv-ex Market

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Six bottles of Chateau Lafite Rothschild 2010 wine sold for 2,550 pounds ($3,990) on the London-based Liv-ex wine market this week, taking the vintage to its lowest level this year as demand remained weak for top Bordeaux labels.

Bordeaux Liv-Ex Wine Market Trade Share Drops From 2014

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Bordeaux’s share of trade on the Liv-ex online wine market has fallen to a monthly average of 74 percent so far this year from 79 percent in 2014, according to the London-based exchange’s latest Cellar Watch market report.

China Finally Agrees to Give Bordeaux Respect

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There is cause for celebration among the top wine producers in the prestigious Bordeaux region of France, a tract that many collectors, investors and oenophiles agree produces the finest, most exquisite and certainly the most desired wines among all its competitors.  Why?  China, a huge player in the all-important, tremendously influential Asian wine market, has, after many years of discussion (plus a few more laden with pressure from the Bordelais) agreed to grant Bordeaux the status of a registered Geographical Indication, or GI.  The decision finally came after months of analysis by the Chinese  General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ).  Officials from the AQSIQ are expected to recognize 45 Bordeaux appellations within the next two months, inspiring a strong sigh of relief among the Bordelais.

Interest in Bordeaux 2010 Vintage Growing

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In the build-up to and immediately after Robert Parker’s 10-year retrospective, the 2005s were all the rage, prices rose, trade went up but, like cherry blossom, the attention was brief.

Half Of 100-Point Wines Under £5,000…Time To Buy?

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Over half of the 49 Bordeaux wines given a “perfect” 100-point score by Robert Parker since 2000 are currently trading below £5,000 a case ($7811).

‘Landmark’ Château Margaux Auction To Be Held In New York

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Sotheby’s is set to hold a ‘landmark’ auction of wines from Château Margaux in New York, the first significant sale of wines from the property’s own cellars.

Robert Parker Gives 10 Year Retrospective Of 2005 Bordeaux Vintage

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Twelve wines have been given “perfect” 100-point ratings in Robert Parker’s 10-year retrospective of the 2005 Bordeaux vintage. The vintage now has the second largest number of 100 point wines, behind the 2009s which have 19 in total.

Understanding the Bordeaux 1855 Classifications

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photo: Chateau Margaux

Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 Index Grows In June

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The Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 gained 0.9% in June to close on 244.08. This puts it up 3.4% on the level of June 2014, bringing it back into positive territory over a one year period for the first time since November 2013.

Is The Bordeaux 2015 Vintage Showing Early Signs Of Greatness?

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Chateau owners in Medoc say the Bordeaux 2015 vintage has got off to a good start following excellent flowering conditions in the vineyard, despite some concerns over recent rain, putting chateaux owners in an optimistic mood, with several describing conditions as ‘perfect’.

2014 Bordeaux Sales Being Driven By American Buyers

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North American collectors bought 70 percent of Bordeaux 2014 wine futures transacted this year through Sotheby’s Wine as the amount sold rebounded from the previous two vintages to climb back close to volumes achieved in 2011.

2014 En Primeur Campaign Effectively Over With Château Montrose Release

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One of the last wines to be released is from Château Montrose. Universally acknowledged as one of the best wines of the vintage, the question is if Montrose is worth a 54% price hike. At a little over $1300 (£850) a case on average it’s certainly at a substantial premium to the majority of its back vintages from the last 10 years and almost as expensive as the current price of the 2005.

Liv-ex May Recap

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May kept most of the industry’s focus on the En Primeur campaigns, but trading continued on the Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 and the Liv-ex Fine Wine 50. Both ran mostly flat for the month with the Fine Wine 100 drifting down 0.06% and the Fine Wine 50 gaining only 0.08%.

Back Vintages Stealing Spotlight From Bordeaux 2014?

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As prices are announced for the 2014 Bordeaux vintage, older vintages are taking some of the spotlight away. Back vintages are standing out as a real value, particularly those predating the high-quality 2009 and 2010 crops. Many industry veterans feel the more mature vintages are where the greater value is to be found, and as for Bordeaux 2014, the general consensus is that it has become noticeable for how unnoticeable it is.

Bordeaux Prices Drop, But Are U.S. Buyers Buying?

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The strong U.S. dollar means 2014 Bordeaux futures cost less which is one of the reasons that many Bordeaux wineries had hoped this year’s en primeurs campaign would be successful in drawing Americans back. Unfortunately, most consumers aren’t buying, even with the 2014 vintage being considered the best in four years.

Sotheby’s NY ‘Greatest Burgundy Collection Ever’ Auction Fetches Over $8.4 Million

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Burgundy was the guest of honor at Sotheby’s most lucrative New York wine auction in 15 years. The sale of the Don Stott Cellar brought in collectors from Hong Kong, Brazil, Mexico, Canada and from all across the US helping to push the total of proceeds from the auction to over $8.4 million, some 22% above the high estimate projections.

Bordeaux 2014 Releases Continue

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Liv-ex April Recap

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Two months of dips in the Liv-ex Fine Wine 100 Index came to an end with a 0.4% increase over March’s level. April, while dominated by Bordeaux 2014 discussions, was a relatively good month for Bordeaux with the region’s trade share rising over last month. Bordeaux should continue to remain a focus in the coming months with the anticipation of Robert Parker’s retrospective of the 2005 Bordeaux vintages due at the end of June.

Chateau Mouton Rothschild Begins First Growth Releases

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A slow start to the Bordeaux 2014 en primeur campaign got a much needed boost this week as Chateau Mouton Rothschild released their first growth 2014 vintage at a price that merchants feel will be viewed as favorable by consumers at €240 ex-négociant, or $263.

Vieux Chateau Certan Emerges As Top Wine of 2014 En Primeur

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Each year, Live-ex surveys the international wine trade after the en primeur campaigns to get industry opinions of the vintage and other key indicators. The trade’s general view is that 2014 is not exceptional, but a good to very good vintage. Industry members, using the Parker scoring model, gave the 2014 vintage an overall score of 92 points (average out of 100).

Sotheby’s New York to Auction Their ‘Greatest Burgundy Collection Ever’

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Dubbed as ‘the greatest Burgundy collection ever offered by Sotheby’s New York’, The Don Stott Cellar: 50 Years of Collecting is estimated to bring in up to $6.2 million next month.

Pricing Expected In Coming Days For Bordeaux 2014

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Jean-Philippe Delmas, deputy managing director at Domaine Clarence Dillon (owners of Château Haut-Brion, Quintus and La Mission Haut-Brion) has indicated that prices for the 2014 vintages should be released by the middle of April.

Liv-ex March Recap

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The Liv-ex 100 index dipped slightly in March, dropping 0.4%, matching February’s decline. The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 held relatively steady until the last week of the month when it drifted, eventually closing March on 268.17, down 0.6%.

Are Bordeaux Primeurs Dead?

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Citing overpriced poor vintages, Robert Parker believes that Bordeaux has destroyed its futures market and that buying en primeur has lost all appeal for collectors. Parker believes classed growth chateau owners have set release prices at such a high level, no advantage was to be had by purchasing the wine before bottling.

Lower Prices Unlikely For 2014 Bordeaux

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Despite pleas from Bordeaux customers to keep 2014 prices down, producers have indicated that the request is highly unlikely.

Bordeaux 2014: U.S. Buyers Back on Track?

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After four years of not buying, U.S. Bordeaux buyers appear to be back on track according to Philippe Larche, sales director for Bordeaux negociant Vintex. The growing reputation of the 2014 vintage is helping fuel the return, along with a stronger U.S. dollar.

Burgundy Leading Auctions Ahead Of En Primeur Campaigns

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Photo: Zachys Wine Auctions

Château Latour Announces Next Releases

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2012 was the last time Château Latour participated in the en primeur system and has since moved to an annual re-release of recent vintages ahead of the en primeur campaigns, as well as a small release of older vintages in September. Latour’s pullout of the en primeur system was to allow them to release wines when it considered them “ready”.

Robert Parker Will No Longer Taste Bordeaux en primeur

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After more than three decades of reviewing en primeur, Robert Parker has announced that he is handing over en primeur tasting responsibilities to British reviewer, Neal Martin. While Parker has stated it is not a retirement, he will still cover the region’s wines from bottle.

Optimism Grows From Positive Momentum of Liv-ex Bordeaux 500

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If you bought Château Haut Bailly 2009 six months ago, your investment would have already grown 62.4% in value. Robert Parker’s decision to upgrade his score to 100 points has helped fuel the massive rise in value, but beyond Château Haut Bailly 2009, the top twenty performers on the Liv-ex Bordeaux 500 are up 15% or more since July 2014.

Investor Revival for Bordeaux?

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After three years of declining Bordeaux prices, signs are emerging that point to a revival of interest among investors.

Chateau Mouton Rothschild auction brings in HK$32 million

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The first ever ex-chateau auction of Mouton Rothschild last week at Sotheby’s Hong Kong gallery brought in HK$32 million (US$4.1 million), more than double the pre-sale estimate of HK$13 – 20 million / US$1.6 – 2.5 million.

Sotheby’s To Hold Major Auction Of Ex-Cellar Collection Of Mouton Rothschild

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Image: http://www.chateau-mouton-rothschild.com/label-art/discover-the-artwork/xu-lei

Interesting Year Awaits Fine Wine Market

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With the first full week of trading in the books, 2015 looks like it might be the year that breaks the unprecedented four year decline of the fine wine market.

Bordeaux Growers Urged to Cut Prices of 2014 Vintage

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Simon Berry, seventh generation wine merchant and Chairman of London’s Berry Bros. & Rudd, has called on Bordeaux growers to cut their 2014 prices after challenges have emerged for finding buyers for the past three Bordeaux vintages.

Silver Lining to Bordeaux 2014 Harvest

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