Chateau Batailley, Carruades de Lafite and Beychevelle head up latest en primeur releases
This week has seen a slew of releases from Bordeaux, including Château Batailley, a “showstopper” Carruades de Lafite , Château Duhart-Milon, and an “unusually suave” Beychevelle.
This morning, the “stylish” and “reassuring substantial” Château Batailley from Pauillac was released for £372 per bottle of 12. This marks an increase of around 11.3% on the 2021 release of €26.50, Liv-ex noted. It is being offered by the international trade for £372 for a case of 12, a 12.7% premium on the 2021 opening price.
According to db’s Bordeaux correspondent Colin Hay, it is “supple, elegant, well-structured with considerable density and layered complexity”, this is both stylish and yet reassuring substantial”, which he awarded 93-95 points. William Kelley was less generous in point-terms, with a barrel range of 91-93 points, although he did call it “an especially strong effort for this estate”.
Yesterday’s releases were led by the “showstopper” Carruades de Lafite – in the words of Antonio Galloni – which was released at €180 per bottle ex-négociant, or £2,256 per case of 12. However, despite the 12.5% increase on the 2021 ex-negociant price (or 13.9% increase on the international trade release price), Liv-ex noted that this was “the best value Carruades on the market”, due to the fact that the Château’s value rises with age, with younger vintages therefore a good buying opportunity.
Meanwhile db’s correspondent Colin Hay awarded it 92-94 points, but noted that it was “subtle, a little understated, pure and sapid – even if it doesn’t really exactly scream Lafite to me”. Suckling was more favourably impressed, giving it a barrel range of 96-97, and describing it as “nervy” with an “‘intense centre palate”.
Another wine from Pauillac, Château Duhart-Milon, also hit the market, at €60 per bottle ex-négociant, 9.1% on 2021’s opening price of €55 per bottle, with the international trade being offered a case of 12 at £756 (equivalent to £63 per bottle).
Critics were a bit divided on this release, with William Kelley scoring it a barrel range of 91-93 points, while James Suckling noted it was “full-bodied yet compacted” with “fine and intense tannins”, rewarding it with a higher score of 95-96 points. db’s Bordeaux correspondent Colin Hay noted it was “soft, layered, gracious and glassy, with finely polished beady tannins” giving it a barrel range of 92-94+ points. However, it’s worth noting that Liv-ex reported that the 2019 and 2014 vintages offered better value, in their assessment.
Other releases this week include St Emilion’s Château Monbousquet, at €39 per bottle ex-négociant – a rise of 8.3% on the 2021 release of €35 per bottle, which is being offered by the international trade for £480 per 12×75. This represents an 14.3% increase on the 2021’s opening price (£420 a case). Colin Hay noted that there was “less obvious oak” which gave “a more natural sense of balance”, was more expressive of the vintage and constant “and feels much less like a brand wine”, awarding it 90-92 points.
Margaux’s Château du Tertre 2022 was also released yesterday, at €30 per bottle – one of Colin Hay’s value picks for the appellation. He described it as “ample and yet compact”, with “gorgeous cedar, plunge-pool softness, super plump black cherries, walnut and graphite. Very long, very refined, with exquisitely soft tannins”, achieving 93-95 points. James Suckling gave it a higher barrel range of 95-96 points, calling it “full-bodied yet compacted”, with “fine and intense tannins”.
Meanwhile Monday saw the release of Château Beychevelle, which William Kelley of Wine Advocate described as “unusually suave and polished tannins in the context of recent vintages” from this chateaux, while James Suckling, who gave it the higher score of 94-95 points (versus Kelley’s 92-94), noting its well integrated tannins, and “lovely bright fruit of currants and blackberries”. It was released at €67.50 – an increase of 17.2% on the 2021 price of €57.60, being offered by the international trade for £836 per case of 12 (an increase of 18.4% on last year’s opening price.
Château Chasse-Spleen was also released, at €24 per bottle ex-négociant.