Bordeaux 2010
By Jeremy Howard, CEO & Co-Founder

Bordeaux 2010

  • The recent release of ex-château Latour 2010 has focused attention on the excellence of the Bordeaux 2010 vintage.
  • Bordeaux 2010 has now been in bottle for 10 years and hence is worth re-visiting from an investment perspective.
  • Since its low price point in early 2016, prices for this vintage have risen strongly.
  • Bordeaux 2010 is the second best vintage on the Left Bank in the last 50 years (Wine Advocate).
  • This vintage is coming into its ‘drinking window’ now, but the best wines have decades left to appreciate. Secondary market supply will start to dry up now as drinkers take delivery.
  • The top wines of 2010 still remain affordable versus the comparable great vintages.

The Best of Bordeaux 2010

The recent release of Château Latour 2010 (ex-château) has refocused the wine world’s attention on the excellence of Bordeaux 2010.

We believe that Bordeaux 2010 is a critically important vintage for collectors. Our key recommendations for medium to long-term holders are:

Bordeaux 2010: Second Best Left Bank Vintage in Bordeaux History

Fine wine investment is all about vintages.

‘Vintage perception’ becomes more and more important as years pass and future buyers rely more on simple narratives about what the ‘must own’ years are. Pairs (or even trios) of back to back vintages can have extra appeal, and hence the twin ‘legends’ of 2009 and 2010 – certainly the greatest back to back vintages in Bordeaux history – are especially interesting.

Future value will be generated by the contrast between the two vintages: 2009 was all about opulence and sophistication, whereas 2010 is characterised by power, structure and intensity. Future buyers will always want to compare and contrast these two legendary years side by side, to the mutual investment advantage of both!

Bordeaux 2010: Prices Rebound from 2016 Low …

Bordeaux 2009 and 2010 vintages were initially released into a wall of Chinese speculative demand. The story is well known of how châteaux hiked release prices too aggressively, causing significant losses for the (mainly Hong Kong-based) speculators who bought second and third tier releases at excessive prices.

But that mini bubble is ancient history. Since finding a floor in early 2016 prices for top Bordeaux 2010 have risen strongly. Given the other supportive factors outlined in this note, we see no reason why this performance cannot continue:

… but are still looking Undervalued versus Prior Vintages

Despite 6 years of solid price gains, the best wines of Bordeaux 2010 still appear modestly priced versus comparable prior vintages. We see this with the 100 points WA vintages of Lafite Rothschild both before and including 2010:

Lafite Rothschild 2010 is still trading below its (admittedly inflated) release price in 2011, a unique situation and one that should embolden long-term collectors.

Entering Drinking Windows – But Decades Left

One of Bordeaux 2010’s great attractions is its ‘cross-over’ appeal to two different buyer communities.

For drinkers, these wines – at 10 years old – are entering their sweet spot of ‘consumability’. Many of our clients are now removing cases from bond in order to sample the first bottle. They will then try another bottle every 2 to 5 years (depending on their patience and how many they have!) for the next 10 to 50 years.

These cases are now being removed from the secondary marketplace at an accelerating rate. For those cases that remain in storage, however, there are decades of time left for them to appreciate, with drinking windows stretching out from today for up to 60 years: