A UNIQUE AND HIGHLY COLLECTIBLE CAMPAIGN


10 June 2020

Previously, the title read “A unique and promising campaign”.  Well, the promise is being turned into reality.

We are a little less in the dark over scores after 10 days of (rather relentless) releases, with the Wine Advocate doing “flash reviews” that showcase Mouton Rothschild, Pontet Canet and Pavie all as being potentially perfect wines. It solidifies the view that this is indeed a very good vintage. Apparently, Neil Martin will publish his scores on Tuesday (the 16th). If those are high too…

“……. This year’s profound expression is without doubt a legend in the making…..”
– 98-100, The Wine Advocate, on Mouton Rothschild –

In terms of prices, there have been a few very high profile releases (Mouton, Lynch Bages, Cheval Blanc, Pontet Canet amongst others) that have come out at minus 25-30% as compared to 2018. That is what we hoped for. These wines have all sold out and, in the case of Mouton and Pontet Canet in particular, are already trading at a significant premium. The vast majority have been released at minus 15+% and,  given the quality,  most are a buy. Often prices are near to what they were in 2014, and less then 2015, 2016 and 2018.

The only reason why prices are where they are is because of the macro-economic climate and the uncertainty surrounding it. If you are of the view that those circumstances are temporary then this vintage is a big buying opportunity.  It is our firm belief that those lucky enough to be in a position to buy will not regret it – they will own stellar wines bought at a significant discount.

When is the last time we said that?  Don’t miss this opportunity. We for one won’t.

1 June 2020

High praise from critics, journalists, professionals and producers as well as very sensible pricing from Pontet Canet – the first major Chateau to release their 2019 – may well present one of the best Bordeaux buying opportunities in several years.

Due to lockdown, the usual Grand Cru Union Bordeaux (world-wide) trade-tastings were all cancelled, as well as the traditional Chateaux tastings in Bordeaux, making it more difficult to present a comprehensive picture of the quality of this new vintage. Add to this the economic challenges of COVID-19, Brexit uncertainty, U.S sanctions on EU goods and high geo-political turbulence around the world, and it becomes clear that there is acute pressure on the Bordelais to offer their 2019 wines at attractive prices

Last week saw Chateau Pontet-Canet release its 2019 vintage onto the market and as we noted at the time of our offering, the price was down some 30% from the 2018. Only hours after its release (!), James Suckling released his score: 98-99. If Pontet Canet has predictive value for the vintage as a whole in terms of both pricing and quality, 2019 Bordeaux will be a most attractive opportunity

famous bordeaux wine labels 1 - Bordeaux en primeur 2019

 

VIEWS FROM THE PRODUCERS
 
“I do feel at this stage that the 2019 will go down as one of the very top vintages made by the estate. It possesses the depth, balance, tension and energy to be a vintage of great complexity and have an ageing potential worthy of the greatest years.”
– Chateau Angelus –

“Mirroring nature’s generosity in 2019, the wines are very rich, deeply coloured and with good alcohol content. Close-knit, satin-smooth tannins makes this a very promising vintage”. 
– Chateau Mouton Rothschild –

“It’s the best vintage we’ve ever done” 
– Jonathan Maltus (100Pts) Winemaker & Vigneron –

“We are very happy with this Haut-Bailly 2019, which combines subtlety and length. A very promising vintage! In its analytic composition, 2019 is quite similar to the 2009. The 2018 vintage tends to resemble to the 2010 and 2016 while 2019 will rather be in line with the 2009 and 2015 vintages.”
– Chateau Haut Bailly –

 

VIEWS FROM THE CRITICS

A majority of winemakers believe that their 2019s are superior to 2018 due to slightly better pH. Having witnessed the harvest first-hand, I believe their optimism is not misplaced.” 
– Neil Martin

“The few dozen or so winemakers I spoke to or corresponded with seem to agree, comparing 2019 to the great 2010 vintage but without the austerity and intensity. Some say 2019 is close to the excellent 2016 vintage but with perhaps slightly less tannin concentration. They all agree that the quality is very close to 2018, 2016 and 2015.”
– James Suckling –

DITTEN FINE WINE PRODUCTSHOTS COLOUR HR 726 1024x683 - Bordeaux en primeur 2019

POINTS TO NOTE

  • The hot dry weather made possible slow fruit ripening.
  • The 2019 growing season was less challenging than 2018, which was blighted by mildew. The only suboptimal characteristics were some heat spikes in July, drought conditions for some of the summer and rain during the harvest in mid-September. Although, some producers have stated the rain actually was a big positive, enabling the vines to be ‘refreshed’ and allowing for better ‘balance’.   
  • Right Bank Reds: plenty of sunshine produced wines with thick skins, rich berry fruits with high sugars and higher alcohol than 2018. The wines have also shown good tannins and lots of colour compounds. Overall, the Merlots were seen as extremely successful with good acidity, freshness and balance.
  • Left Bank Reds: the berries are reported to be smaller than the 2018’s but with at least as much sugar but more acid, colour and tannins. Making for more ‘classically-balanced Cabernets’.
  • The vintage saw no one grape variety outshining others. The good weather allowed for leisurely harvesting in both left & right bank, with excellent results from Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot.
  • The Whites: have very good freshness, lovely acidity and low PH, reportedly the dry whites are showing better than the 2018’s.
  • The Bordeaux Institute of Wine & Vine Science (ISVV) has given 2019 vintage a 3.5 – 4-star rating out of 5. By way of example and scale, in the 2013 vintage not even 1-star was awarded and in 2014 3-stars were awarded.

 

BUYING TIPS

  • Choose the style you most enjoy and at a budget that makes you comfortable.
  • If you are purchasing for investment, we strongly advise to keep any wines in-bond (we offer a bonded storage service).
  • We will not be offering every 2019 Bordeaux, Only wines which we regard as representing good value and winning performers of the vintage.
  • As we are predominantly a specialist fine wine wholesaler, we always only charge ‘wholesale prices’ for our stocks and never any higher ‘retail’ equivalent.
  • We will not hold you to any tied-in buying policy to secure stock. You are free to purchase whatever you may wish to acquire and without any imposed conditions.
  • Wines may be released in several stages (tranches), prices may be altered depending on the take-up of the previous tranche. Therefore acting quickly is crucial to secure stock you wish to obtain.
  • Please note that En Primeur 2019 will only become physically available in the Spring of 2022. We will not charge you for delivery until that time and will do so at the rates at that time. Please find our current delivery rates on our how to order page.

 

SEND US YOUR WISH LIST

To have the best chance of securing the wines you would like to acquire, please send your wish list to info@dittonwineandspirits.com and we will treat you with priority.