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Asian fine wine tastes starting to broaden

It appears the Asian fine wine consumer’s tastes are starting to broaden as buyers in the East look beyond the longtime first growth favourite Lafite Rothschild.

Looking at the latest Liv-ex data, Mouton Rothschild is enjoying significant price increases, while Lafite’s performance plateaus. Latour too has overtaken Lafite in recent indicators.

Over a five-week period from the start of October, according to the Liv-ex Claret Chip Index, Mouton Rothschild has increased in price by 5.3%, the highest rise among the first growths (see graph).

Further, the latest update from The Wine Investment Fund notes “Mouton prices were up around 10% in a month for the best 1990s vintages”.

“Mouton 1998,” the report continues, “is beginning to drink well now: this leads to increased demand and falling supply, and this pushed up its price last month by 11% to £2,300 a case.”

Aside from showing that a broader range of fine wine brands are being demanded by Asian consumers, there is a suggestion that Lafite’s runaway performance may have came to an end.

“Are the dramatic price increases we have seen for Lafite Rothschild throughout 2009 (with most vintages up 40% year to date) now starting to ease?” asks Liv-ex on its blog.

Another month of data should be able to answer this question more conclusively. In the meantime buyers are beginning to see Mouton as undervalued relative to Lafite.










Patrick Schmitt, 12.11.2009 

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