Fine wine predictions for 2020

En primeur snookered?

What are the Bordelais to do? This year’s en primeur campaign feat. the 2018 vintage was proclaimed – by château owners and certain critics – as featuring even more ‘best ever’ wines.

Then Neal Martin went along this October and found much to like but also declared it short of “potential perfection”.

This was somewhat embarrassing of course because many Bordelais had increased prices substantially from the 2017 offer.

And now it appears that the 2019 vintage is rather exciting indeed – which is really the last thing the Bordelais need because who’s going to buy it?

The recent UK election and resulting Conservative majority sent the pound soaring but renewed Brexit uncertainty has sent it right back down again.

The US has placed severe tariffs on European wines that are possibly going to become even more swingeing.

These are the two principal foreign markets for Bordeaux futures each year and neither is looking particularly rosy.

The pound could be in a stronger position again by next summer depending on any deal that might be arranged and if the pound is strong then British buyers may take a shine to wines which they’re not going to get for another two years anyway and President Trump is facing an impeachment vote which, if it were to come off, could change things radically across the pond.

These are all highly speculative however and just as equally the pound might be in the doldrums and Trump will still be in power and ratcheting up tariffs.

All of which will leave the Bordelais releasing wine into a vacuum. The sensible course would be to forgo the current habit of holding back increasing stock and release more but for less. At the very least we might hope for perhaps very small cuts, holding prices and only a very few price increases. The reality, unfortunately, is many (but not all) estates doubling down, holding back more stock and raising prices and, frankly, whatever the sit-rep in the UK and US then, that’s still the worst thing they can do.

2 Responses to “Fine wine predictions for 2020”

  1. Peter says:

    Trump doesn’t give a s*** about French wine farmers cares about United States farmers so keep your opinion about trump to yourselves He’s the President of the United States not The president of France

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