Download En Primeur 2009 Price List
What is En Primeur ?
En primeur, or wine futures, refer to the release and sale of wine by Chateaux and their merchants before they are bottled and ready for physical delivery. The principal area that is regularly involved in this process is Bordeaux in France. The wines themselves are delivered usually in the Spring, two years after the En Primeur campaign and sales. (For instance: En Primeur wines from the 2010 vintage will be sold En Primeur in Spring 2011 and will be ready around Spring 2013.) During the two-year period, the wines will complete their maturation process, usually done in barrels. They will then be bottled after 18 to 24 months depending on the wine, before finally being delivered to the merchant and subsequently being available to the customer.
How does it work ?
Typically wine merchants and renowned wine critics will be invited in Bordeaux to taste wines while they are still maturing, and some time before they are ready to drink. Their experience enables them to say how the raw wine they are tasting, will taste when it becomes a finished product, and judge whether the wine is worth the price that the grower is asking for, even though it can sometime taste different from the final drinkable wine.
The wine merchant offers the wines they select to customers in the form of a promise to deliver that wine later, at a fixed price now. This price excludes transportation, duty and taxes. If the customer chooses to buy, he pays the merchant and an invoice is issued which states that the customer has a right to the wine at a future date.
When the merchant finally receives the bottled wine, the customer has various options. He/she can take personal delivery, pay the transportation, duties and taxes and store, drink or sell the wines as he chooses. Customers may also prefer to have the wine stored by J&D Burleigh Pte Ltd rather than at home. This can be arranged “under bond” either in France or Singapore. This means that the payment of Duty and Local Taxes is delayed while the wine is in a appropriately registered and controlled warehouse.
The latest release - 2010 Vintage
After the resounding success and soaring prices of 2009, many in Bordeaux hoped for a ‘simply good’ vintage for 2010. Why would this be? Well, a solid (but not exceptional) vintage would provide much needed breathing room after a period of such intense activity and demand. Of course, nature is a law unto itself and it seems that the 2010 vintage will at the very least compare favorably even to its lauded predecessor; at best, it will build upon its successes and set a new benchmark altogether.
The unusual situation is analogous to the 1989/1990 vintages in that we are now faced with one fantastic vintage after another. As Guy Meslin at Chateau Laroze puts it, “The pips already have a lovely nutty taste, and I can honestly stay the quality seems greater than last year. Might we be having two great vintages side by side, as with 1989 and 1990?”
But are they stylistically similar? Almost certainly not. Drought has defined 2010 far more significantly than in 2009, which ordinarily would be considered a dry year. This led some commentators to prematurely announce a necessary decline in quality. As Thomas Duroux observes: “We were a little concerned about the drought but the rains came on time at the start of September to make sure the phenolic maturity completed.” The water stress has resulted in thick skins (rich in polyphenols) and a smaller yield. We can also expect a lively acidity, thanks to cooler nights than last year. For comparisons we should cast back five years to 2005, or perhaps all the way to 1990, rather than looking at 2009.
The 2010 vintage has a classic, powerful and refine style, which will be a wonderful complement to the attractive 2009 in most collector’s cellar. For the purists, 2010 is simply what Bordeaux has produced best, and for the others it is The classic vintage that will certainly be another benchmark of reference for the future, but everyone agrees that 2010 will shine like a star in the years to come.