Here’s a sobering thought at this time of year, especially if you’ve been drinking your stock of old Lafite. A report in the Guardian, entitled ‘How alternative investments have fared since 2000’, showed that the top wines from Bordeaux have been the best investment since 2000, ‘earning returns that far outstripped equities, gold and property.’
In short, the ‘Big Eight’ – Lafite, Latour, Margaux, Mouton, and Haut-Brion (the five First Growths from the Left Bank) along with Pétrus from Pomerol, and Cheval Blanc and Ausone from St-Emilion (all Right Bank), have all proved to be solid performers.
But there’s much more to this game than following names, scores and bankable vintages. (If you’d like to know more for the start of the next decade, leave a comment below, and that way I’ll have your email address. Or email me direct – see ‘Contact’ above.)
As for the biggest movers, it is no secret in the world of fine wine that the price of Château Lafite-Rothschild has gone through the roof of late, with buyers from China going mad for it. According to Liv-ex, the London Fine Wine Exchange, a case of the legendary 1982 would have set you back a not inconsiderable £2613 at the start of 2000, and it now sells for around £25,500 before taxes, a rise of 876%. This is obviously insane, especially when one reads recent reviews like this from Jamie Goode, a highly respected UK wine writer. Even Robert Parker has downgraded his original 100 point rating for this wine to 97. I reckon it depends on the individual bottle and its provenance, storage and so on – not that I’ll be opening too many.
Hindsight and all that but when someone said ‘invest in Bordeaux’ just over a decade ago, we obviously got the wrong end of the stick. As for my sterling pension…