There is apparently a limit for prices for 2005 futures in Bordeaux. Yquem closed its 2005 en primeur sales this afternoon at 3 p.m. in Europe following a less-than-enthusiastic response from the marketplace, according to sources in Bordeaux. At 400 euros to the trade, it was just too expensive, especially considering the 2001 (a wine to which I gave 100 points) sells for less money.
“It was just too hard to sell,” said one négociant. “I only sold half my allocation.”
It’s not a problem for Yquem, however. I am sure the château is not hurting to sell a large percentage of the production as en primeur. It can sell the wine later. And the wine is clearly classic quality -- 95-100 points in my barrel tastings.
I think that 2005 en primeur is clearly a situation when you have to decide how badly you want the wine. Or how much you are willing to pay for the wine. If you want some of the big name 2005s, you are going to have to splash out a lot of money. It’s a great vintage. And it will be a great vintage forever. It will be remembered in the same light as 2000, 1995, 1990 and 1989, among others.
I don’t think it is a question of buying this vintage or that vintage, instead of 2005. If you want some 2005 for your cellar, you are going to have to buy it. That’s what I am going to do. Granted, I am going to buy much less than I thought because of the high prices – much, much less in fact.
What can be said is that I doubt that the best wines of the vintage – those that I scored 95-100 points, for instance – are going to cost less later. Châteaus have released more wine on the market at high prices and the market seems to be prepared to buy the wines.
As I have written in the past, only time will tell if the ultimate consumer will buy all these wines and one day drink them. My gut feeling is that 2005 is not a great vintage for speculators due to the high initial prices of all the top wines. Most of the top-name châteaus have taken all the profits through their high prices.
Tomorrow Le Pin, the ultra-collectible, tiny-production Pomerol, will be released on the market. It won’t be cheap.
William Clay — Atlanta, Georgia — June 28, 2006 2:07pm ET
Chris Seiber — Newport Beach, CA — June 28, 2006 5:22pm ET
Glenn S Lucash — June 28, 2006 10:07pm ET
James Suckling — — June 29, 2006 2:16am ET
Guus Hateboer — Netherlands — June 29, 2006 3:20am ET
Martin Stoevesandt — Germany — June 29, 2006 4:29am ET
Greg Simmons — Cleveland, OH — June 29, 2006 8:43am ET
William Clay — Atlanta, Georgia — June 29, 2006 9:28am ET
Robert J Chalupczak — Chicago — July 4, 2006 12:18pm ET
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