Parker’s First Growth value predictions deliver profit for investors

Liv-ex has reviewed Parker’s ‘instinctive’ forecast on First Growth values made ten years ago to once again validate the importance of First Growth wines as an essential component of a wine investment portfolio.

“…if my instincts are correct, 10 years from now a great vintage of these first growths will cost over $10,000 a case…at the minimum. It is simple: The quantity of these great wines is finite, and the demand for them will become at least 10 times greater”.

Robert Parker in Food & Wine Magazine, September 2004.

In fact Parker’s instincts were largely correct, despite the radical correction in First Growth prices since mid-2011. Liv-ex have used the great vintages that were around when Parker wrote the original article in 2004 to measure the world’s best-known wine critics’s predictions, i.e 1982, 1990, 1996, 2000 and 2003. At the peak of the market, in early 2011, the average price per case was indeed $10,000 for all of these vintages – above $30,000 for the 1982 and close to $20,000 for the 2000.

However, prices have fallen by between 25% and 37% for these vintages post 2011 (notably less than the Liv-ex 50, which has fallen 40%). But of the 25 wines involved in the calculations, 13 still have a market price of $10,000 (£6,900) per case or more – including all 1982s, all 2000s except for Haut Brion and all Lafites except for the 1990, which has a market price of $9,400.

So ten years on Parker’s predictions would appear largely to have been realised. The 1982 and 2000 are both well over $10,000 per case, while 1990, 2000 and 2003 market prices are below this level after falling for the last three years.


Of the “great” vintages that Parker was unaware of in 2004, it is the 2009 and 2010 that stand out. Without any time value, they have an average market price of $10,340 per case. We strongly advise our clients to ensure that they have First Growth 2009 and or 2010 in their portfolios. Contact us now for current availability and prices. Read the full Liv-ex article here