Rothschild name still holds sway in Asia

Vintages from the stables of Lafite and Mouton Rothschild have dominated the most traded wines by value in Asia so far this year, Liv-ex has reported.

source: Liv-ex

Fine wine trading in recent years traditionally gets a little boost from the Asian (China/Hong Kong) market in the run up to the New Moon Festival, which falls on 1 October this year.

Despite experiencing a difficult end to last year and being the first to suffer the effects of the response to the Covid-19 pandemic this year, Liv-ex reported on its blog that, “fine wine demand from the continent has been steady”.

Looking at the best-performing wines in the region so far this year, by volume things such as white Burgundy, Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Brunello di Montalcino have all been high on Asian buyers’ shopping lists this year.

In trades by value there are some new interlopers from Italy, the US and Champagne in the top 20 best-sellers but it’s still Bordeaux and especially anything with a Rothschild name that rules the roost.

In particular, it’s clear to see that generally older, ready to drink vintages have been particularly popular; as is often the case in China and Hong Kong where there is a great emphasis on opening bottles.

Of the top 20 wines traded by value in Asia this year, 15 are from Bordeaux and 13 are from either Château Lafite or Mouton Rothschild and even one of the Californian’s on the list, Opus One, has a Mouton connection.

The top four wines traded by value are Lafite’s 2016, 2017, 2014 and 2010 vintages – neatly encapsulating two highly rated ‘on’ vintages and two ‘off’ vintages suited for earlier drinking.

Opus One’s critically acclaimed 2016 vintage has been the fifth most traded wine by value this year interestingly and its 2017 is seventh.

The other Lafite vintages seeing trade have been the: 2008, 2013 and 2009 and 2017 second wine Carruades.

All of the Mouton trade meanwhile has been for pre-2010 vintages with the 2005 being the most traded by value (in sixth place), followed by the 2008, 2006, 2002 and 2003. No doubt with many of these wines sitting below £5,000 per dozen they’ve been pegged as savvy buys and again, all wines that are in a drinking window.

The non-Rothschild Bordeaux wines on the trading block meanwhile were Latour’s 2004 and Pichon Baron’s 2015 vintage.

The only other wines getting a look in from outside of the Gironde meanwhile were Super Tuscan Sassicaia’s 2017, Louis Roederer’s 2012 Cristal, the two Opus One vintages as mentioned and Caymus’s 2014 Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon.

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