iDealwine update: La Tâche

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24th February, 2016 by Arthur de Lencquesaing for iDealwine

Often overshadowed by DRC’s Romanée-Conti cru, La Tâche remains one of the most highly prized wines in the Côte de Nuits – a fact reflected in its stratospheric price rise recently.

La tacheaboutWell-cared for vines, strictly controlled yields and as late as possible harvest produces an aromatic and opulent wine. Deeply coloured, La Tâche develops a palate of extraordinary aromas of dark fruits, truffle and spices.

Rich and concentrated, its bouquet releases infinite tones that melt in the mouth to form a lovely ensemble – always exceptional, even in the difficult vintages. Hence in 1950 and 1951, it was the only wine in the domaine that was bottled.

Like many other Burgundy properties, the parcel La Tâche was originally connected to a monastery. It was then owned by two different families, one of which was the Joly de Bévy, who were dispossessed during the Revolution.

Later owned by the Basire and then the Liger-Belair families, the remaining part of La Tâche was purchased by the emblematic Domaine de La Romanée-Conti in 1933, joining the other mythical crus of Grands-Échézeaux, Échézeaux and Richebourg. From this vintage, La Tâche, solely
owned by one single domaine, became a ‘Cru Monopole’.

It is of course rare, producing 20,000 bottles per year, and is highly sought after by wine connoisseurs around the world, particularly in Asia.

La Tâche remains more accessible in price than the iconic cru of the domaine, DRC, yet it is also regarded as an icon with legendary status.

Buying a bottle of La Tâche, even in a lesser vintage, not only provides an extraordinary pleasure when opening the wine, but, if not opened, will give a certain guarantee of a comfortable appreciation in the medium term.

table 1iDealwine recently auctioned an exceptional bottle, the ‘ancestor’ of La Tâche, which used to be called Les Gaudichots. This 1926 vintage in good condition provoked an interesting battle of bids and reached €4,800.

The increases of La Tâche at auction over the last 15 years is truly exponential: the iconic 1990 has seen its price jump by €457 to € 3,630 between 2001 and 2016 (see table 2).

The most recent vintages are, of course, much more expensive as they emerge on the market. However, room for improvement remains, especially for the best years: between 2009 and late 2015, a bottle of La Tâche 2005 has appreciated by 45% and is now worth €2,760.

In the last iDealwine auction of the year, 17 bottles of La Tâche were offered and the case of the 1999 vintage was probably the most impressive: a bottle of this vintage was awarded €3,480, an increase of 518% compared with 2003, when buyers started to see this wine appearing at auction on a regular basis.

table 2Fill Levels

iDealwine recommends that when buying such wines, it is important to make sure the level of the wine is decent as this is the most obvious indicator of cellaring conditions, which has a major impact on the price.

For Burgundy bottles, the measures are calculated in centimetres between the cork or capsule and the wine. Bottles of over 15 years are usually slightly lower, but when the gap is more than 5cm, the price can drop by around 50%.

But of course, the most important point is to find a very reliable source and consult wine specialists who can give you information about the provenance and history of the wine.

This sponsored article originally appeared in the February edition of the drinks business magazine.

2 Responses to “iDealwine update: La Tâche”

  1. You’ve got the numbers wrong: La Tache produces more than Romanee Conti – 20000 bottles compared with about 4500

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