In any En Primeur campaign there are four key players: the chateaux, the negociants, the merchants and the collectors. For the system to work over the long term, all participants must stand to make money for it to be worthwhile.
The Super Seconds occupy an awkward space in the pantheon of Bordeaux pricing – between the First Growths and the more affordable lesser crus. The below chart takes a basket of Super Seconds – Cos D’Estournel, Ducru Beaucaillou, Montrose, Palmer, Pichon Baron and Pichon Lalande – and calculates the percentage difference between the En Primeur release price* and the current market price. As shown, rewards for holding stock for both collectors and merchants have declined sharply since 2005.
The Super Seconds may have cut prices from last year, but with both merchant and collector losing money for three years running, making a case for buying these wines En Primeur is becoming harder.
* For the collector, this represents current market price vs London release price. For the merchant, current market price vs ex-negociant price. All prices have been calculated in Euros.