Bordeaux 2009: value to be found?

By July 18, 2014Bordeaux, Regions

The highly acclaimed 2009 vintage was released when the market was approaching its peak. Prices were high, but the En Primeur campaign was successful. Distribution was spread far and wide: everyone wanted to get their hands on a vintage which Robert Parker suggested “may turn out to be historic” during his in-barrel tastings. No fewer than 21 wines were awarded potential 100-point scores, and 19 wines received them once in bottle. Parker confirmed that “this is unquestionably the greatest Bordeaux vintage I have ever tasted”.

So what happened to the 2009 prices when the Bordeaux market began to fall? Below we have looked at three groups of wines: the First Growths, 17 of Parker’s 100-point wines (excluding First Growths) and Parker’s Magical 20, which was inspired by the 2009s. The latter two groups have five crossovers (Clos Fourtet; Cos d’Estournel; Leoville Poyferre; Pontet Canet; Smith Haut Lafitte).


Following release, prices did very little. The 2009s were released at unprecedented levels, restricting their ability to make further headway despite the market’s bull run. In March 2012 in-bottle Parker’s scores were released, and while the First Growths continued their descent, both the 100-point wines and the Magical 20 shot skywards. The sheer number of 100 point scorers meant that buyers could own the best of a great vintage without having to pay First Growths prices. Owners of these wines are still in the money despite the Bordeaux 500 dropping 21% and the Liv-ex 50 dropping 40% since peak.  

Nevertheless, they are off peak levels, which might present opportunity to those who are yet to own Parker’s favourite vintage. For example, Leoville Poyferre – both a 100 point wine and one of the Magical 20 – is off 20% since peak. With a market price of £1,440, this is the cheapest 100-point wine from Parker's favourite Bordeaux vintage that money can buy.

NB The chart in this blog was created using Cellar Watch – Liv-ex’s subscription service for consumers. To find out more, click here