Bordeaux 2010 rescores could trigger price movement

Bordeaux 2010 Critics’ tastings take place on the 30th January ahead of highly anticipated 10 year rescore

Bordeaux 2010 is ten years old this year and the fine wine trade’s most influential critics will be tasting the vintage’s best tomorrow in London. This is an important event in the price performance of investment wines. Historically, the publication of key critical scores in the lifetime of a wine can be an influencing factor on value. The ten year anniversary is particularly important and wines with a strong expectation of an upgrade can see prices move ahead of the rescores being published and a stronger curve immediately after. Bordeaux 2010 is a prime vintage for investors.

2010 stunned the market at its first trade tastings in Spring 2011, as it occurred back-to-back with the extraordinary 2009, whichRobert Parker Sniffing Wine produced more Parker 100 point wines than any other vintage on record. 2010 achieved a quality rating nearly on a par with 2009, with a number of key wines noted as having the potential to become 100 pointers. It was also noted that the 2010s were built to age and the best is yet to come!

As a result Bordeaux 2009 and 2010 are considered by many as the two most important vintages for fine wine investors and that the top wines should be included as a staple component of a wine investment portfolio.  

The 2010s en primeur campaign in Spring 2011 coincided with the peak of the market driven by Asian buyers when prices for Bordeaux First Growths hit extraordinary levels. At the time there were concerns that the campaign pricing strategy was riding the wave of a strong 2009 and an unsustainable price curve. Ten years on, as we all know, Bordeaux suffered a price correction as investors and consumers sought value in the wines of other regions, but quality was never in question and Bordeaux is still the most liquid sector of the market.

Robert Parker, the world’s most influential wine critic at the initial tastings, provided a global quality benchmark for the wines of 2010 and the power and influence of Parker’s points should not be underestimated even today. At the first tastings in Spring 2011, Parker stated that ‘the wines would enjoy “astonishing longevity” on the back of high alcohol, fresh acids, lower pHs and huge tannins’. His view at that time was that 2010, 2009 and 2005 may be the “three greatest Bordeaux vintages I have tasted in my career.”

Parker published his quality scores about six weeks after the tastings in Spring 2011 and as usual the market responded with demand for those ear-marked as having the potential for perfection. The table sets out Parker’s top wines of the vintage:

Robert Parker’s top wines of Bordeaux 2010:

2010 WINE CLASSIFICATION PARKER SCORE
Ausone Premier Grand Cru Classe A, St Emilion 98 – 100
Haut Brion First Growth, Pessac Leognan 98 – 100
Lafite Rothschild First Growth, Pauillac  98 – 100
Latour First Growth, Pauillac  98 – 100
Petrus Pomerol 98 – 100
Beausejour Premier Grand Cru Classe B, St Emilion 96 – 100
L’Eglise Clinet Pomerol 96 – 100
Pontet- Canet Fifth Growth, Pauillac 96 – 100
Montrose Second Growth, Saint-Estèphe  96 – 99
Le Pin Pomerol 96 – 98
Margaux First Growth, Margaux 96 – 98
L’Evangile Pomerol 96 – 98
Vieux Chateau Certan Pomerol 96 – 98

Source: The Wine Advocate

Parker’s Scoring System:

  • Extraordinary: 96 – 100
  • Outstanding: 90 – 95
  • Above Average – Very Good: 80 – 89

Liv-ex’s global critical view on Bordeaux 2010:

Again, back in Spring 2011, Liv-ex provided a more rounded qualitative view of the vintage’s wines by creating the Liv-ex Total Score for each wine using the mean average score of all of the key critics at the time including Robert Parker, Neal Martin, Jancis Robinson and others. Initially, Margaux was the most highly rated wine in the early stages of critical review, by the time all of the critics’ scores had been published, Latour held the top spot, followed (very closely) by the Right Bank’s Petrus. The table below shows the top ten average quality scores for Bordeaux 2010.

Liv-ex Total Scores for Bordeaux 2010:

Rank Wine Liv-ex Total Score
1 Latour 98.0
2 Petrus 97.7
3 Margaux 97.6
4 Lafite Rothschild 97.3
5 Haut Brion 97.1
6 Vieux Chateau Certan 97.0
7 Mouton Rothschild 96.9
8 Cheval Blanc 96.6
9 Ducru Beaucaillou 96.0
10 Le Pin 95.8

Source: Liv-ex .com

We will be at the tastings tomorrow to form our own view and, of course, to get the opinion of key members of the trade. Owners of 2010s earmarked for a potential up-grade are well positioned for any price movement and there is still time, ahead of the rescores being published in approximately six weeks, to acquire Bordeaux 2010s, some of which are now priced well for those looking to average down from the initial release prices or for any growth to be enjoyed from an ugrade.

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