Taittinger’s 2002 Comtes de Champagne has been building a steady following since its release – helping to buoy the prestige cuvée market in the process.
Liv-ex has reported that the 2002 has accounted for 98% of Comtes’ trading this year – although there has also been interest in 1995 and 2000.
The index noted that good scores from the likes of Jancis Robinson MW (18/20) and an increase in interest for Champagne in recent months have done much to boost volume and value.
Trades in Taittinger six packs have risen from just 11 in 2011 to 351 in 2012 so far.
A case of six currently trades for around £360 on Liv-ex.
Meanwhile, Bordeaux Index told the drinks business that it has sold nearly 800 six-packs of 2002 Comtes in the last three months.
Champagne overall has seen a higher than normal market share in 2012, with a two year high of 4.4% this June.
As is clear from Liv-ex’s graph, it is Taittinger’s Comtes that has taken up a significant amount of slack as trade in Dom Pérignon and Cristal slows.
Buyer for Bordeaux Index, Gareth Birchley, told db: “Champagne in general has been incredibly successful. People have finally woken up and seen how cheap Champagne is compared to the rest of the market.
“There has been a movement away from people considering Chamapgne as just a celebratory thing and to more of a wine.
“Most of all though they’re realising that the top examples are great value for money,” Comtes de Champagne in particular.
Birchley added that the 98% dominance of 2002 was broadly in line with BI’s own experience, not because buyers are uninterested in other vintages but because they’re so hard to get hold of.
He added that some will be stockpiling their 2002s in anticipation of heightened interest particularly after the Wine Advocate’s Antonio Galloni releases his scores this October.
Birchley said: “If Galloni scores 2002 quite highly, which we believe he will, demand will go through the roof.”
He quoted some of Galloni’s initial comments which describe 2002 as, “one of the most remarkable wines I tasted (on his recent trip)” and also his prediction that “2002 will disappear from the market”.
Birchley finished by saying that this level of demand had already been seen with the 2002 Dom Pérignon, which BI sold around 2,000 six-packs of when it was released, and that some buyers may already be looking ahead to 2004 or even 2005 vintages.