Duhart Milon 2015 was released today at €48 per bottle ex-negociant, 14.3% higher than 2014 (€42). It is being offered by merchants for £500 per 12×75, up 17.6% on the 2014 release of £425.
Neal Martin scored the wine 90-92 and called it “a fine Duhart Milon that is more compromising than the tannic ‘beasts’ of yesteryear”, although he also acknowledged that he would like to “see more personality come through by the time of bottling.”
For those who cannot wait that long, the 96-point 2010 is available for 20% more at £600, and the 94-point 2008 is in the market for a fraction more than the 2015 at £520.
Climens 2015 continued the day’s releases at €48.5 p/b ex-negociant, up 10.7% on 2014 (€43.8). It is being offered by merchants for £515 per 12×75, up 21% on the 2014 ex-London open price.
The 2015 is more expensive than several back vintages but appears to have quality to match. Neal Martin scored it 96-98, praising aromas that “included acacia honey, grapefruit and a little frangipane,” and observing that it is “destined to be a great Climens”. Those seeking a great Climens with a little longer in bottle – and at the same price as the new release – may look to the 2009, which in Martin’s eyes is also “destined to be a top tier Climens.”
Lascombes 2015 has been released at €50.4 per bottle ex-negociant, up 20% on the 2014 release price of €42. It is being offered by the international trade at £535 per 12×75. This is 30.5% higher than the open price of the 2014 which was first offered at £410.
As the chart above shows, this price point puts it at around the same level as a number of more mature vintages available in the market.
The most recent vintages – those from 2011 onward – are available at discounts to the 2015. Buyers seeking value might look towards the 2012: it has a score of 94 from Robert Parker and is available at £420, 21.5% below the 2015.
In a busy day of releases from Bordeaux, Leoville Barton 2015 has come out at €54 per bottle ex-negociant, up 22.7% on the 2014. With a merchant release price of £575 per 12×75, it is up 33.7% on the £430 release of the 2014.
Leoville Barton 2015 was praised by several critics. Neal Martin awarded the wine a barrel score of 94-96, describing it as “an outstanding, classic, drop-dead gorgeous Leoville Barton that is destined to give immense pleasure over the coming years.”
The 2015 may be more expensive than many of its older vintages but it would seem it has the quality to match. However, buyers who share Neal Martin’s palate may be interested to note that while Robert Parker only awarded 92 points to Leoville Barton 2005 – a downgrade from his original 94-96 – Martin scored it 95 last year. For those seeking a Barton to drink sooner rather than later, its 20% increase on the 2015 may just be worth it.
Branaire Ducru 2015 was released today for €37.2 per bottle ex-negociant, up 26.5% on the 2014 (€29.4). For London buyers, the release of £395 per 12×75 makes it 36% more expensive than the 2014’s release of £290.
Neal Martin awarded Branaire Ducru 2015 90-92 points, saying that he expected the wine to “rest at the top of my banded score”. Yet while the 2015 scores more highly than many of its older siblings, it is also more expensive. For buyers looking for top Branaire, the 94-point 2010 – available for 6% more at £420 – may well look appealing.
Pontet Canet 2015 has been released at €75 per bottle ex-negociant, up 13.6% on the 2014 release price of €66. The Chateau has cut back allocations this year, offering quantities equivalent to just 60% of last year’s release.
The wine is being offered by the international trade at £792 per 12×75. In Sterling terms, this is 22.2% above the merchant open price of the 2014 which first came onto the market at £648.
Neal Martin (94-96) called the wine “intriguing and complex, almost mercurial”. Pontet Canet is a popular brand with a strong following and its best wines – those that have been scored a perfect 100-points by Robert Parker – are commanding up to £1,500 on the secondary market.
The price of 2015, however, is higher than several recent vintages already in the market: the 96-point 2008, for example, is available at £565 – a 28.7% discount on the 2015. These back vintages might be more appealing to price-conscious buyers.
Lafon Rochet 2015 has been released at €28.10 per bottle ex-negociant, up 27.7% on the 2014 release price of €22. For UK buyers, the hike on 2014 is steeper: it is being offered by the international trade at £300 per 12×75, a 36.4% increase on the 2014 offer price of £220.
Neal Martin (90-92) described it as “a little more voluptuous than its peers” but “a little hard at the moment”, adding: “It will need several years to just lose its brutishness.”
But will buyers be willing to wait? Several more mature vintages with similar scores are available in the market at lower prices than the 2015: the 2010, for example, is offered at £270 – a 10% discount.
Sociando Mallet 2015 has been released at €22.20 per bottle ex-negociant, up 23.3% on the 2014 release of €18. It is being offered by the international trade at £240 per 12×75. This is 37.1% higher than the merchant open price of £175 for the 2014 last year.
At this price, the 2015 is among the more expensive Sociando Mallet vintages on the market – but without a high score to match: it received just 85-87 points from Neal Martin. Buyers might look back to the equally priced 2010 which received 91+ points from Robert Parker.
The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index was firmer this week, rising 0.4% to 285.21. This is the highest the index has been since March 2014. Trade by volume and value was higher, but Bordeaux activity was noticeably weaker. Market participants have started to turn their attention to the 2015 En Primeur releases and are hoping for prices that will generate demand.
Bordeaux trade share was down with the region achieving 57.6% of total trade by value, well below last week’s share of 74.8%.
First Growth trade represented 14.1% of total trade. Haut Brion and Lafte Rothschild were the most active, representing 31% and 27% of First Growth trade by value.
Burgundy has been rising for the past few weeks and represented 17.6% of trade by value. The ‘Others’ also saw a significant increase at 8.2%, boosted by Penfolds, Grange 2009 (WA 97) – the second highest wine traded by value this week.
Pape Clement 2009 has continued to benefit from Robert Parker’s Hedonist Gazette 100-point score and was the best performing wine of the Left Bank 200 Index in April. The 2015 vintage was released Monday at a significant discount to the 2005, 2009 and 2010 and so sold very well.
It was also a strong week for Italy. The region represented 9.4% of trade by value with Sassicaia’s second wine, Guidalberto 2012 (AG 89) the top wine traded by volume. Altesino, Brunello Montalcino 2010 (AG 92) was the second most traded wine by volume, described by Antonio Galloni as “fresh, lively and very nicely balanced throughout.”
Pontet Canet 2011 (WA 93+) was the fourth most traded wine by value and the third most traded by volume. It is currently the cheapest vintage available in the secondary market at £458 per 12×75.
Grand Puy Ducasse 2015 has been released at €25.8 p/b ex-negociant, up 16.2% on 2014’s release (€22.2). It is being offered by merchants at £275 per 12×75, a 27.9% increase on the 2014 merchant release price of £215.
The wine was described by Neal Martin as “well balanced” and offering “attractive persistence.” He scored it 90-92 points. James Suckling noted the 2015 was a “refined and balanced red for the vintage” and scored it 90-91.
Buyers looking for value may seek out the 90 point 2012, available in the secondary market at £239 per 12×75.