Focus on: Bordeaux 2009
Following recent ’10 years on’ tastings, one held at Bordeaux Index whilst the ‘Southwold group’ met at Farr Vintners, there have been various write ups, reports and blogs appearing. Jane Anson’s write up in Decanter can be found here, Farr Vintner’s Chairman Stephen Browett’s blog here and the mighty Joss Fowler on Vinolent here.
The initial reaction from the time, which can so often can be over-hyped, has now been confirmed (which is nice) – this really is ‘a vintage of the century’! Most people view it alongside the famous 2005 vintage in terms of overall quality although the ’05 is regarded as a rather more grown up vintage with the ’09 being a more confident and flamboyant younger sibling. In due course and following years of maturation, they will both have to overcome 2010 and 2016 for the absolute title and neither of these two are going to be pushed over lightly. As well as being exceptional, 2009 was a consistent vintage and did well on the left and right although it has now showed a tad disappointingly in Sauternes, certainly when compared to earlier indications.
The following wines have been mentioned in more than one dispatch from respected commentators so have made it into this condensed list of really top picks, with market price scores (MPS) and relative value scores (RVS) to follow:
St. Emilion: Ausone, Canon, Cheval Blanc and Pavie
Pomerol: Le Pin, Petrus, Le Gay
Pessac-Leognan: Haut Brion, La Mission Haut Brion, Fieuzal, Smith Haut Lafitte and Pape Clement
Margaux: Margaux, Palmer, Rauzan Segla (and 2nd wine Segla), Issan
St. Julien: Ducru Beaucaillou, Leoville Poyferré, St. Pierre (big surprise)
Pauillac: Latour (strong claims for WotV), Lafite, Mouton, Grand Puy Lacoste, The Pichons and Pontet Canet
St. Estephe: Montrose, Lafon Rochet, Les Ormes de Pez
Medoc: Cantemerle, Bernadotte
Broken into comparable peer groups, starting with the stratospheric right bank set:
The first growths are still below their release prices and continue to underperform both the WO150 index (not surprisingly, given Burgundy’s ascent) and the WO Bordeaux Index. They will outperform at some stage, but we don’t think it is yet judging by the supply side of the equation.
Generally speaking, a relative value score (RVS) in double figures for a first growth signals a buy, so nothing doing here.
And now on to the arguably more interesting second liners. It is interesting to note that they have not suffered from the over-priced releases (compounded by some crazy speculation shortly after) in the same way as the first growths and have performed much better in the secondary market as a result, many generating decent returns.
A lot of these wines have pleased the critics and are punching way above their £££ weight. Look how the relative value scores reach double figures and soar. A score of over 20 for this group should cause a loud bark of approval.
And now on to the real cheapies, which will make for exceptionally lovely wines at really attractive prices, mainly for the drinker but with some likely upside on the prices of the posher names to be enjoyed too!
A special mention should go to Grand Puy Lacoste (RVS 37.6), a Grand Vin from grand appellation (Pauillac) from a lovely branch of grand Bordeaux family. The wine came in first equal with Pichon Baron (21.3) and not that far behind Latour (4.3)! it even looks cheap in this ‘lowly group’ here!
We have covered the ‘marmite’ wine that is Cos d’Estournel ’09 here and have come down on the side of the .
You can argue the case to buy any of the wines listed in this post, given the quality of the vintage, but here is the Strong Buy list:
Croix de Beaucaillou
For drinkers and investors alike:
Grand Puy Lacoste
And if money is no object:
Ausone, Cheval Blanc, Le Pin and Petrus
Latour, Haut Brion and Margaux
Posted in: Fine wine analysis,
Tags: Alter Ego, Bernadotte, Bordeaux, Bordeaux 2009, C, Decanter, Farr Vintner, fine wine, jane anson, Joss Fowler, Medoc, Pauillac, Pessac-Leognan, Pomerol, St Emilion, ST Estephe, St Julien, Stephen Browett, Vinolent, wine,