Bordeaux - En Primeur 2022 Vintage
19 April 2023 at 16:00:00
In the last week of April barrel samples will be tasted by merchants and critics from all over the world, and this happens every year. Once the wine is then bottled, it will be ready for shipment to customers at a later date. The most important wines at the en primeur tasting are wines that have come from Burgundy & Bordeaux. That said, wines will also be tasted that have been produced outside of these iconic areas, including but not limited to the Rhone Valley, California, Tuscany, Piedmont & Germany.
Our expectations will be that prices here in turn will be slightly higher than the 2018, 2019, 2020 as interest rates have increased in the last year alone from 0.8% in France to approximately 4%. This is good news for the chateau, and not so good for the merchants and negociants where prices are expected to increase over the forthcoming years as production costs and bottling costs have increased significantly.
The wines will be assessed by members of the International wine trade in Bordeaux. Tranches are then released overtime in the market by the Chateau to test the market. First negociants will buy at tranche 1, and then these negociants from Bordeaux will sell to merchants worldwide with tight restrictions on allocations per EEA.
It is worth noting that without the futures market of en primeur the chateau may not free up cash for each vintage until it is bottled. So, negociants support the estates year on year and secure future years allocations. On the contrary, alike negociants, if merchants fail to uptake their allocations they may be embargoed on future en primuer vintages.
The last of the cheap en primuers was back in 2008. For example, the release price for a case of 12x75cl for Chateau Lafite Rothschild was £1,850.00 as an ex-London open price. The 2009 vintage for en primeur was then set at £11,000.00, and the 2010 was then £12,000.00.
The result here is that consumers and collectors have to be more savvy and look to back vintages, assessing critics scores, drinking windows and availability in the market. What we are seeing overtime is a general decrease in production levels, whilst demand is increasing globally we always consider physical stock in the secondary market to pose less risk when compared to en primeur.