Bordeaux 2016: a sudden rash of releases

Six châteaux have released their wines this morning including Du Tertre, Monbousquet and Chasse Spleen – with Montrose rumoured to be in the wings.

Château Kirwan

The day began with the first real rush of wines so far this campaign, with Chasse Spleen, Pavie Decesse, Bellevue Mondotte, Monbousquet, Kirwan and Du Tertre all being released to négociants, all with price increases on their 2015s and a few likely to get short thrift from merchants and buyers. Although, at least there were only six, not 30 or 40.

  • Moulis-en-Médoc property Chasse-Spleen released at €21 per bottle ex-négociant, a 9.4% increase on the cost of its 2015. Offered in London at £258 a dozen it is 25.9% above the £205 the 2015 was sold at.
  • Du Tertre in Margaux rose 16.6% on its 2015 price, releasing at €29.4 p/b ex-négoce, so £348 per case.
  • Margaux third growth Kirwan released at €31.50 p/b ex-négoce, a 10.5% increase on its 2015.
  • Saint Emilion property Monbousquet went up 10.7% on its 2015 price, out at €37.2 p/b ex-négoce, making it £445 a case.
  • Pavie Decesse was up 6.5% at €96 p/b, £1,100 a case in London (nearly 15% above the 2015’s opening price).
  • Bellevue Mondotte meanwhile also rose 6.5% on its 2015 making the 2016 €115 a bottle and £1,320 a case.

Analysis from Liv-ex was not brimming with praise. Using its ‘fair value methodology’, it discerned that Right Bank properties Monbousquet and Pavie Decesse in particular were significantly above the ‘fair value’ line indicating each had several back vintages with similar or better scores that were more favourably priced.

Du Tertre too is perhaps a touch too high. Margaux is generally thought to not be at its best in 2016 (compared to what it achieved in 2015) and the 2015 Du Tertre has a better score and is cheaper. What was a 16% price hike hoping to achieve, especially as factoring in the exchange rate actually makes it almost 27% more expensive than the 2015 here in London?

On the other hand, despite being one of the more expensive wines out so far this campaign, Bellevue Mondotte has excellent scores and while there a few back vintages with good scores and attractive pricing, the 2016 sits at a hefty discount to its 2005 and 2009 and a decent remove from its 2010.

With Château Montrose rumoured to be out today as well, there may be a slight pause before offers start flying out in earnest.

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