En primeur releases continue to filter out from Bordeaux, with 2012 prices confirmed this morning by fellow Pauillac fifth growths Clerc Milon and Armailhac.
There were further announcements from Sauternes-Barsac first growth Château Coutet – one of few estates in the appellation to produce a grand vin in 2012 – and three wines from the Gerard Perse St Emilion stable: Pavie Decesse, Bellevue Mondotte and Monbousquet.
Perse is yet to release a price for his top estate, Château Pavie, which was promoted to Grand Cru Classé “A” status in last year’s controversial St Emilion reclassification.
In keeping with other 2012 releases so far, prices for all the latest Left Bank châteaux were considerably lower than in 2011, although still well above 2008 levels.
With an ex-negociant price of €31 per bottle, Philippe de Rothschild-owned Clerc Milon is being offered for 14% less than its 2011 vintage, but 44% above the 2008 price.
It was a similar story for Armailhac, whose €25 per bottle price falls 17% below its 2011 release, but remains 30% above 2008.
While a number of properties in Sauternes, including Yquem, Rieussec and Suduiraut, decided not to release a grand vin from 2012, Barsac first growth Château Coutet came out at €31 per bottle.
This marked a 26% drop on Sauternes’ acclaimed 2011 vintage and a modest 3% rise on the region’s challenging 2008 vintage.
Among Perse’s Right Bank properties, the decline on 2011 was less marked, with Pavie Decesse’s €78 per bottle price just 7% lower than last year’s release price and exactly the same as in 2008.
Similarly Bellevue Mondotte released at €99.50 per bottle, just 8% lower than its 2011 price, although for once it also showed a considerable 25% decline on its 2008 release.
Finally, Perse chose to release Monbousquet at €25 per bottle, a 5% drop on 2011 but 7% increase on 2008.
This year’s steady flow of releases marks a welcome contrast to last year’s campaign, which saw merchants complaining about the release of 43 châteaux on a single day.