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Bordeaux 2013: Chateau Margaux releases in quickest campaign for decades

The flurry of Bordeaux 2013 en primeur releases has continued following Easter, with Chateau Margaux the latest first growth to hit the market, taking the total number of wines released to 150.

Negociant figures show that the 2013 en primeur campaign has been one of the quickest for years, suggesting many chateaux have heeded advice that there is no point in waiting on a vintage that is set to be drinking early.

By April 18 in 2008, 41 wines had been released. That figure by the same date in 2011 was just 19 wines, while in 2012 there had been 36 releases by this point. In contrast, by last Friday, 140 of the 2013 wines had been released, with a further 11 out today.

Brokers say very few have so far sold on outside of Bordeaux, with just 10% of wines selling entirely out of their production from négociants on to final merchants, and a further 12% selling over 75%.

Most merchants report that Lynch Bages, Beychevelle, Calon Ségur and the First Growths have sold through, but that most others have seen a mixed response.

Among this morning’s releases have been Chateau Margaux at €215 ex-Bordeaux (down 10%), Pavillon Rouge at €72 and Pavillon Blanc at €96. Troplong Mondot at €52.80 ex-Bordeaux, down 2% from last year’s €54. Chateau Dauzac at €20, down 17% on last year when it was €24, Pedesclaux at €17.80, down 7%, from €19.20 Chateau d’Issan at €26.50, down 5% from €28, and Grand Puy Ducasse at €21 ex-Bordeaux, down 13% on last year (€24).

Jean-Christophe Mau, of négociants Yvon Mau, told Decanter.com, ‘The speed of prices coming out is good in one way because our clients have tasted the wines recently, but there are too many for us to properly deal with each wine.

‘And as so many have got the price wrong anyway, that timing of release doesn’t make any difference. Chateaux need to do more than just lower their price, they need to offer a coherent price compared to what else is out on the market.’

Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux

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