Liv-ex top 50 most-searched wines in 2018

Each year around the summer season, Liv-ex examines the top 50

Each year around the summer season, Liv-ex examines the top 50 most-viewed wines, based on visits to their website from January to July.  The search-data acts as a barometer for the interests of fine wine merchants, showing where there have been changes in the trade’s interests each year.

Firsts still first

The Bordeaux First Growths continue to occupy the top five spots in the table, with Lafite Rothschild holding its position as the most viewed wine by Liv-ex members. The only difference from last year is Margaux has leapfrogged Haut Brion into third place, helped along by this year’s most searched wine, Margaux 2015.

Risers

Brands on the move such as new entrant Carmes Haut Brion (+34) have been the winners so far this year. However, trade is yet to catch up with interest, as the wine ranks a lowly 141st in terms of trade by value. Canon has had another strong year. It has climbed 23 places into the 20th spot, after climbing 24 places in 2017.

Opus One is the largest non-Bordeaux riser, jumping 24 places. Louis Roederer, Cristal has also done well, jumping 18 places. Trade has also seen a corresponding increase in 2018, placing the champagne as the 9th most traded brand on Liv-ex.

Fallers

For some to rise, others must fall. Traders appear to be losing interest in Super seconds as, amongst others, Ducru Beaucaillou (-8), Leoville Barton (-6), Leoville Poyferre (-5), Montrose (-4) and Pichon Baron (-2) have all subsided in the ranking.

Vieux Chateau Certan was the biggest faller, down 15 places.

This year’s top 50 are shown in the table in full.

Sources: 

Fine Wine Market

 

SOTHEBY’S INTRODUCES ‘INSTANT’ FINE WINE CELLARS


SOTHEBY’S INTRODUCES ‘INSTANT’ FINE WINE CELLARS

Sotheby’s Retail has introduced an ‘Instant Cellars’ concept, giving customers in the US and Hong Kong the chance to buy wine collections for drinking, cellaring and investment.

In the US, these cellar ‘starter packs’ range from a simple introductory cellar costing US$5,000 to a collection costing US$25,000, with two further options in-between; while only two options are, currently, available in Hong Kong.

The number of wines, choice and average bottle price changes from cellar to cellar and includes a consultation with a specialist in order to arrive at a final selection that suits the tastes of the individual.

The selection of wines available also differs slightly between the US and Hong Kong but covers all the basics of French, Italian, Australian and US fine wine

All of the cellars, once chosen, can be delivered to select US cities or within the Hong Kong SAR in 24 hours.

The options available in the US include:

  • Cellar 1 – ‘Introductory’: 50 bottles of wine with an average price of $115; the customer chooses 25 wines, two bottles of each. $5,000
  • Cellar 2 – ‘Intermediate’: 72 bottles of wine with an average price of $150; choose 36 wines, two bottles of each. $10,000
  • Cellar 3 – ‘Enjoyment’: 165 bottles of wine with an average price of $165; choose 55 wines, three bottles of each. $25,000
  • Cellar 4 – ‘Investment’: 90 bottles of wine with an average price of $300; choose 15 wines, six bottles of each. $25,000

The full list of wines for each cellar include:

  • Cellar 1 – 2004 Dom Ruinart; Bernard-Bonin 2015 Meursault Vieilles Vignes; 2009 Branaire-Ducru; 1996 Calon-Ségur; 2005 Langoa Barton; 2009 Montrose; 2014 Denis Bachelet Gevrey Chambertin Vieilles Vignes; 2013 Aldo Conterno Barolo Bussia; 2013 Ulysses.
  • Cellar 2 adds – 2008 Louis Roederer; 2010 Climens; 2013 Pavillon Blanc; 2014 Bonneau du Martray Corton Charlemagne; 2011 Comtes Lafon, Volnay; 2006 Forts de Latour; 2013 Ornellaia; 2013 Claude Dugat, Gevrey Chambertin.
  • Cellar 3 adds – 2009 Dom Peerignon (Tokujin Yoshioka edition); 2002 Pol Roger Winston Churchill; 2013 Aile d’Argent; 2015 Domaine Leflaive, Puligny Montrachet Clavoillon 1er Cru; 2009 Hosanna; 2001 Léoville Las Cases; 2005 Vieux Château Certan; 2005 Montrose; 2007 Prieuré-Roch, Nuits Saint Georges Clos des Corvees; 2011 Solaia and 2013 Araujo.
  • Cellar 4 – 2012 Angélus; 2009 Pontet Canet; 2014 Geroges Roumier, Chambolle Musigny; 2009 Pavillon Rouge; 2008 La Mission Haut-Brion; 2015 Robert Groffier, Chambolle Musigny Les Hauts-Doix 1er cru.

Here is the breakdown – The US$5,000 entry-level instant cellar includes some of the best French Burgundy and Bordeaux, as well as Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and Italian Barolo. At the high-end of the spectrum, Sotheby’s offers two US$25,000 cellars, which give potential buyers a chance to purchase either a range of top-flight wines for “enjoyment” or a more select group of top red Burgundy and Bordeaux for investment.

The “enjoyment” cellar, as Sotheby’s has dubbed it, includes 55 different wines, for a total of 165 bottles. The range of wines chosen is designed to give future collectors a chance to explore and discover what kinds of grapes, regions, and styles they prefer. Fans of white Burgundy, for example, have eleven selections to try, offering the chance to compare styles of winemakers and different vintages.

The cellar includes two white Burgundies produced by Domaine Leflaive in 2015, a Bourgogne Blanc, which is the most generic appellation for white wine in Burgundy, and a selection of premier cru, a designation in Burgundy a notch below the top-tier Grand Cru that’s only given to single vineyard wines.

Buyers can decide whether they prefer one over the other, or compare Leflaive’s Burgundies to two examples of 2015 white Burgundies produced by Jean-Noel Garnard.

The “investment” cellar, by contrast, includes only 15 selections of red wine, with six bottles of each, meaning the average price of each bottle is US$300. The 90 bottles are more or less evenly split between Burgundy and Bordeaux, and are from top producers and vintages expected to grow in value. Examples range from a 2005 Vieux Château Certan from Pomerol, Bordeaux to a Domaine Anne Francoise Gros Echezeaux Grand Cru from Côte de Nuits in Burgundy.

Sotheby’s is also offering two versions of the instant cellars in Hong Kong: an introductory cellar of 46 bottles for HK$33,000 and an intermediate cellar of 62 bottles for HK$70,000.

For the collection management and advisory business, Sotheby’s is targeting clients who are eager to build a cellar but aren’t confident in their tastes, or what they should buy. For an annual fee Sotheby’s will work with these clients to ascertain their preferences (“we have a fun questionnaire,” Gilbert says), but it’s up to the client how much they want to be involved and “how much they want us to take the reins,” she says. Sotheby’s will even buy wines from “trusted sources” outside the company, as well as from Sotheby’s, and will help install and manage the inventory.

For long-time collectors, Sotheby’s can help track inventory, as well as guide clients on what wines to drink, sell, or continue to age.

Sotheby’s will charge an undisclosed annual fee for its wine advisory services, while the fees for collection management will be tailored to the individual needs of each client.

Sources:  Drinks Business and Sotheby’s

La Cité du Vin et The Ultimate Guide To Champagne

It’s official “The Ultimate Guide to Champagne” is now available at La Cité du Vin’s “Reading Room” reference library.  The librarian has added it to La Cité du Vin’s collection under the category of “Champagne Books”.

La Cité du Vin’s “Reading Room” is an area open to everyone, offering a wide selection of literary, historical, artistic and anthropological works relating to the world of wine. Here you will discover more than 1,200 key works in 16 different languages for reference use.

La Cité du Vin is a unique cultural venue in Bordeaux, France, devoted to wine as a cultural, universal and living heritage. It offers amazing experiences around the world, throughout the ages, and across countless cultures and civilizations. You can book tickets on their website www.laciteduvin.com and onsite.

About “The Ultimate Guide to Champagne
The Ultimate Guide to Champagne takes you through, chapter by chapter, to find out everything you need to know about the wonderful world of Champagne. With original photography, illustrations, charts, maps and a Champagne Tasting Cheat Sheet — this is an essential book for Champagne lovers.

The book consists of 22 chapters covering everything from the region’s history and viticulture, to tourism information, gastronomy and even health benefits.

The book is recommended for everyone, from beginners to experts. It’s a remarkable point of reference into which any wine-lover or professional can dip in and browse.

The book is available on Amazon.com https://www.amazon.com/Ultimate-Guide-Champagne-Liz-Palmer/dp/0991894634 and private events.

Champagne Event with The International Wine and Food Society-Oakville

It was a culinary evening of magic, from the moment I arrived at the private home in Oakville, I knew that a night of elegance and celebration was ahead!

It was an honour and privilege to participate in this event as the “Special Guest” speaker, to discuss my book “The Ultimate Guide to Champagne” and personally sign 40+ copies.

The event was well-organized by Christian Frayssignes, Dale and Jim Egan and catered by Kerr St. Café, Oakville.

60 members and guests had the opportunity to taste six champagnes, personally selected by cellar master Christian Frayssignes and Liz Palmer to pair with specially designed and prepared by Kerr St. Café, Oakville, while listening to jazz and blues tunes by pianist Rob Roland.

Champagne and Food Pairings

Lacroix-Triaulaire NV Brut

Brie & peach crostini with Roquefort & field honey

Fresh watermelon cube with elderflower,
apple-cucumber slaw & candied ginger

J. de Telmont Grande Reserve Brut NV

Tuna poke with herbed russet chips and
fresh parsley vegetable spring roll

Henriet-Bazin Selection de Parcelles ler Cru

Mini chicken parmesan lollipops with marinara dipping sauce

J. de Telmont Blanc de Blanc 2010

Lobster petit-fours…. butter poached lobster set on
roasted potato cubes with avocado puree & tarragon

Delouvin-Bagnost NV 70% Pinot Meunier

Rare thinly sliced grilled beef tenderloin swirled on mini Yorkshire
puddings with horseradish cream & pomegranate

Jean Pernet N.V.

Homemade macaroons

My favorite pairing for the evening was J. de Telmont Blanc de Blanc 2010 with Lobster petit-fours/butter poached lobster set on roasted potato cubes with avocado puree & tarragon.

I want to thank The International Wine and Food Society-Oakville for an extraordinary evening and in particular President, Christian Frayssignes and hosts Dale and Jim Egan.

And a special thank you to Esprit du Vin, Tod Warner and Kathryn Taggart Braneff!

Liz Palmer

“Dame Chevalier” of the Ordre de Coteaux de Champagne

Author of “The Ultimate Guide to Champagne”

The International Food and Wine Society – Oakville:  https://www.iwfs.org/americas/oakville

Liz Palmer – www.liz-palmer.com 

2017 Bordeaux Futures Prices + Analysis

Chateau Palmer released its prices on April 23, ahead of others — a rarity, as other Bordeaux’s top châteaus wait to see how the other wineries position themselves. In addition, the Margaux a third-growth released the first tranche at 20 percent below its 2016 release price.

A few thereafter, others followed Palmer’s example. Bordeaux watchers are left wondering what the top estates will do in a challenging year for sales. Will they release the wines quickly and cut prices significantly, in a bid to interest consumers in a vintage that is not as eagerly anticipated as the previous two? Or will they move slowly? And will they keep prices high, assuming that even if consumers decline to buy the wines now, they’ll buy them down the road on release?

The 2017 vintage should yield many excellent wines, but it is by no means in the league of 2015 and 2016. Conspiring against prices are the fact that volumes are low: Following a devastating April frost, Bordeaux’s 2017 crop is 40 percent smaller than 2016’s. To make things worse for American consumers, the current exchange rate ($1:€1.19, as of May 8) is less attractive than during last year’s campaign.

Overall, the reds are fresh and pure, built on bright acidity rather than tannins, providing charming wines that will drink well in the near to mid-term. On the other hand, the dry whites are superb, and the sweet wines of Sauternes and Barsac are outstanding. Consumers will need to pick carefully, as a gray and dry summer resulted in a heterogeneous collection of wines that lack the punch and drive of great years.

Below you’ll find regular updates and analysis on the campaign, with prices given both ex-négoce, which means before importers and retailers add markup, and average retail price, which is compiled from Wine Spectator’s tracking of leading U.S. retailers. It’s what you can expect to pay. Prices for the 2017s are are also listed as the current prevailing retail price for 2015s.

May 9: The Campaign’s Cautious Start
Châteaus Palmer and Valandraud were the first notable red wines to hit the Place de Bordeaux, and in the weeks since, a few other futures have trickled out. Last week saw Châteaus Pape Clément, Batailley and Langoa Barton join the campaign.

Both Pape Clément (91-94 points based on a blind tasting of its barrel sample) and Valandraud (93-96) showed restraint in their pricing, with Pape Clément at 61.20 euros ex-cellar, a 7 percent decrease from the 2016. Because of the weakening dollar, the wine is selling at leading retailers for about $90 a bottle, or $1,080 a case, identical to 2016 futures. It’s lower than the 2015, currently selling for $120.

Valandraud released at 100 euros, a 22 percent drop on 2016. It’s selling at leading retailers for $150 a bottle, $1,800 a case, less than the 2016s, which debuted at $172, and the current price of $204 for 2015.

Palmer’s early and eye-opening release of 192 euros a bottle was a 20 percent drop from 2016. It’s selling for $284 a bottle, $3,408 a case, at top U.S. retailers, 10 percent less than the 2016 futures did and a big drop from the 2015, selling for $353 now.

Other notable releases so far include Châteaus Batailley (89-92), Dauzac (90-93, and an up and comer worth your attention), Langoa Barton (90-93) and Ormes de Pez (88-91). Langoa released at 31 euros per bottle ex-négoce, which means U.S. retail offerings are showing up around $47 per bottle (en primeur sales are typically only offered by retailers in lots of 6 or 12 bottles). Dauzac released at 30 euros, resulting in an initial U.S. retail average of $45 per bottle.

The accompanying 2017 price chart for top châteaus is noted below.

2017 Futures Prices
These estates represent a selection of leading wineries. The ratings are potential scores based on barrel samples. Retail prices are an average of trusted retailers we follow. To provide a comparison, we’re showing prices for 2015 futures and current prices for the 2010 vintage, a classic year that is currently available.

Château 2017 Score 2017 initial futures offering at U.S. retail 2016 initial futures offering at U.S. retail 2016-2017 retail change Current 2015 price at U.S. retail
Angelus 93-96 $NA $380 $384
Beychevelle 90-93 $77 $NA $101
Calon-Segur 91-94 $NA $91 $85
Canon 93-96 $NA $100 $350
Canon-La Gaffelière 90-93 $NA $99 $99
Cheval-Blanc NYR $NA $690 $808
Clinet 92-95 $NA $102 $157
Clos Fourtet 93-96 $NA $115 $129
Cos-d’Estournel NYR $NA $163 $188
Ducru-Beaucaillou 93-96 $NA $189 $193
Figeac 92-95 $NA $202 $216
Giscours 89-92 $NA $62 $78
Gruaud-Larose 91-94 $NA $73 $78
Haut-Bailly NYR $NA $117 $142
Haut-Brion NYR $NA $551 $647
Hosana 91-94 $NA $160 $160
La Conseillante NYR $NA $201 $185
La Fleur-Pétrus 93-96 $NA $234 $239
La Mission Haut-Brion NYR $NA $433 $465
Lafite Rothschild NYR $NA $657 $628
Léoville Barton 93-96 $NA $87 $106
Léoville Las Cases 93-96 $NA $242 $224
Léoville Poyferré 92-95 $NA $91 $97
Lynch Bages 92-95 $NA $131 $142
Malescot-St.-Exupéry 90-93 $NA $58 $98
Margaux NYR $NA $559 $1,706
Montrose 91-94 $NA $149 $159
Mouton Rothschild NYR $NA $549 $600
Palmer 92-95 $284 $318 -10% $353
Pape Clément 91-94 $91 $90 +1% $121
Pavie 93-96 $NA $379 $394
Pavie-Macquin 92-95 $NA $80 $90
Pichon Baron 92-95 $NA $155 $167
Pichon Lalande 92-95 $NA $162 $159
Pontet-Canet 90-93 $NA $144 $129
Rauzan-Ségla 91-94 $NA $83 $151
Smith-Haut-Lafite 91-94 $NA $106 $115
Valandraud 93-96 $150 $172 -13% $204
Vieux Château Certan NYR $NA $262 $357 Continue reading “2017 Bordeaux Futures Prices + Analysis”