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Bordeaux 2012: cautious optimism as Lynch Bages released

Five days in to the 2012 campaign and there seems to be cautious optimism that the Bordeaux chateaux are listening to the market and are prepared to lower their prices.

Lynch Bages: ‘lukewarm reaction’

Following Mouton Rothschild’s successful price release yesterday morning, Pauillac fifth growth Lynch Bages came out yesterday afternoon at €60 ex-Bordeaux, a drop of 13.5% from last year, but still a long way above its 2008 price of €32.

The second wine, Echo de Lynch Bages, was released at €21.60, a drop of 5%.

The renowned Moulis former Cru Bourgeois Chateau Chasse Spleen has released at €16.80 (-5%) and Chateau Pibran at €16.80 (-7%). Chateau Lamothe Bergeron, AOC Haut-Medoc, has remained unchanged at €8.30.

Négociants have bought Lynch Bages, but they are reporting slightly slower selling to wine merchants, even for such a strong brand.

‘Of the major releases this week, the reaction to Lynch Bages has been lukewarm,’ said Paolo Pong of Altaya Wines in Hong Kong.

‘Some customers are fine, and we have bought a little for stock, but if they had come out 10-15% below, we could have sold thousands of cases.

Rauzan-Ségla has gone well, it has done exactly what everyone wanted, and gone with a similar price to 2008, and we should all applaud them for being fair.

Gazin for us was not so successful, because there are plenty of available vintages at the price or below, while Mouton also did the right thing, with a price similar to cheapest vintage available. It’s moving but not flying out the door.’

‘If more can go in the direction of Rauzan-Ségla we will end up selling some wine, and get a real campaign for first time since 2010,’ said Pong. ‘Let’s hope the message is getting though.’

Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux

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