Where’s the Value in 2013?

Peter Shakeshaft - Vin-X blog Having tasted Angelus, Yquem and Cheval Blanc with Master of Wine, Hugo Rose, earlier this week, day 3 commenced with the arrival of Jane Masters MW to join us on the tastings. The first offering was a rather ‘green’ Margaux, followed by Cos D’Estournel which showed well and endorsed the view that the Northern Left Bank wines maybe where the value is in 2013.

The fact is 2013 is going to be a challenging vintage for the investor to seek out value and is already getting a reputation for ‘early drinkers’. Olivier Bernard, president of the Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux (UGCB), announced that 2013 will go down as a 'bad memory' for many Bordelais.

The Liquid Gold of Sauternes may surprise us all with seemingly some of the best to be had from the vintage. Sandrine Gabray of Yquem has commented in the press that the conditions for noble rot wines were perfect and that 2013 was a good year for Sauternes and Barsac wines. Importantly, quality control has meant that the vintage production of these outstanding wines was very small with only 40% of normal supply available. Some have the view that Yquem 2013 may well be one of the rare stars of the vintage, in my view it is a long way off the stellar 2001 and is more similar in quality to 2007 – we will watch this space. For more information click here:

http://www.decanter.com/bordeaux-2013/en-primeur-coverage/586754/bordeaux-2013-sauternes-enjoys-payback-time-with-modern-vintage

Hugo Rose

For the investor, 2013 may have very little to offer as the wines are not predicted to age well and supply is significantly down on usual production levels, Palmer has reported production of 3,800 cases instead of its usual 9,000, read more:

http://www.harpers.co.uk/news/en-primeur-will-winemakers-have-pulled-rabbit-from-hat/356086.article

Pricing may also be an issue as it was an expensive vintage for growers and ultimately release prices may not engage the market. Given the quality of the 2011, 12 and 13 vintages the view is that real price movement will come from the wines of the 2005, 08, 09 and 10 vintages. Contact us for opportunities to enhance your portfolio.

TOP TIP of the day from Bordeaux: St Estephe and northern Left Bank didn’t get as much rain last year as the rest of Bordeaux and as a consequence the wines of these regions may buck the trend including Lafite, Cos d’Estournel and Montrose. Notably, Montrose 2013 also tasted better than the norm and in a similarly challenging vintage, 1998, Montrose proved to be one of the winners with Parker claiming it the finest St. Estephe of that year.– Hugo and I will keep you posted!