2012 Bordeaux en primeur – Lynch Bages + first thoughts and significant releases

by Charles Lea


The Bordeaux 2012 campaign, which has been criticised in recent vintages for its boringly slow progress, has had the sense to start briskly this year – slightly too briskly for me as I had to get to Vinitaly as well this year and the notes are far from complete.

The big release, which looks to be very much the land of reality, and is cheaper than any other vintage on the market:-


2012 CHÂTEAU LYNCH BAGES 5ème Cru Classé Pauillac £669.00 per case ib

six-bottle cases, magnums and all other sizes available to order via our website.

Last year Rauzan Segla was widely condemned for an idiotic release price which resulted in at least one large Bordeaux negociant refusing their allocation – this year – well what a difference a year makes. Offered at £420 per case in bond this morning, this is now back in touch with reality, since this is below the current price of the 2004, and level with the 2008.  It is also a very good wine in this vintage which Margaux seems to have pulled through better than many. With the 2010 at around £900, this does represent a return to more normal pricing, working out at around £45 per bottle actually delivered to your cellar (assuming you buy from us and take delivery duty-paid on arrival, and don’t go for a cheaper headline price elsewhere only to find you get charged per case delivery and all sorts of other hidden charges). At least conceivable to the drinker I would have thought? In percentage terms it has come down more than 30% on the 2011, which would be welcome elsewhere too, but as I say, the 2011 price was considered ridiculous at the time.

We have also had the release of very small volumes of Mouton Rothschild at £2800, and Petit Mouton is available at £760 per doz if anyone wants to play the Chinese market. Other wines released so far (prices per dozen 75cl bottles in bond, other sizes to order:-

2012 CHÂTEAU LES ORMES DE PEZ Cru Bourgeois Saint Estèphe £195

As ever I recommend this as a wine to buy in bulk and in magnums for big parties ten years down the line.

2012 BLANC DE LYNCH BAGES Château Lynch Bages £129 per 6 bottle case

I really liked this and thought it compared well with all but the very very best of the Pessac-Léognans – something different.

I tasted the 2012s two weeks ago, before a lightning dash to Verona for the Vinitaly fair, and have yet to go fully though my notes. David Porter also came to Vinitaly last week, came back on Tuesday afternoon, switched planes at Gatwick and went to Bordeaux to taste there for the rest of the week. By the end of the weekend we will have our full notes on all the wines digested and onto the website.