Vintage good to outstanding. Timing poor to appalling. Pricing might be interesting
We have already expressed our sympathy with the view that the interruption of the primeur tastings in Bordeaux should really have resulted in a radical rethink of the whole en primeur circus, which, in the last ten years, has become a selling opportunity for the Chateaux rather than a buying opportunity for the consumer. Nevertheless, wines are coming onto the market, and with at least some of our customers sensing that there might be a buying opportunity with price reductions mentioned, we are going to bring what information we have to you as we get it.
We will inevitably be relying on other commentators’ views, where available, to supplement our own tastings.
“2019 will be remembered as a “made-to-measure” vintage for Grand Cru producers who were able to choose the ideal time to begin the harvest.” Ronan Laborde (President of the Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux and owner of Château Clinet)
While we have tasted only a limited number of wines so far, we feel that if the rumours of lower prices are confirmed, there will be some we will be able to recommend. Have a look at our ‘recommended’ lists for our pick of the bunch.
Time will tell whether the release prices will really come down enough to make this an interesting exercise. We will try to give an honest assessment of both the quality and value of each release. You can follow all our thoughts in the L&S Release Reports archive.
For a quick check on what is happening on a daily basis, why not bookmark the ‘Recent Releases’ page which will give you all the wines in release order.
PONTET CANET kicks off
Today’s release of Château Pontet Canet at £366 per six bottles has certainly given lead. At a release price that is close to 31% down on the 2018, and a note from Jane Anson in Decanter (from her tasting at the Château last week) that this is as ‘an excellent Pontet, full of vigour‘, and giving it 96/100, it looks attractively priced compared to comparable vintages. It is apparently selling well in many markets.
Other releases of note to date: 2019 CHÂTEAU BEAUMONT, a reliable cellar-filler for a mere £102/doz in bond, Pierre Taïx’s 2019 CHÂTEAU LA MAURIANE at £145/doz in bond, by all accounts excelling in this vintage (even more than usual), and Jean-Noël and Thomas Hervé’s 2019 CHÂTEAU MOULIN HAUT LAROQUE, one of our favourite Fronsacs, rated ‘best-ever’ by James Suckling, at £170 / doz in bond.