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Bordeaux En Primeur 2020

BORDEAUX EN PRIMEUR 2020

The 2020 Bordeaux en-primeur campaign has started and one big gun – Chateau Cheval Blanc has already been released. We are expecting that this will see the release of more notable chateaux over the coming days, although in our opinion, it will be early June when more of the big beasts will become available.

The Top Selection team has tasted over 40 samples direct from the Chateaux and our conclusions on the vintage, style and stand out wines are below. As ever the campaign will move fast and allocations will be keenly contested. We invite you to register your interest or send us a wish list for what is proving a very popular vintage!

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2020 – THE COVID VINTAGE

Weather
We all remember how hot last April, May and June were in the UK. Well the same was true for Bordeaux, but they also had massive downpours, making the vines grow fast and without any major disease. Then came a very hot and dry July and August with almost no rain and a nice warm September in Bordeaux.

Yields
Due to the hot weather, some chateaux lost 10-15% of the crop, but what they produced were healthy.

Quality – a mix of 2009 and 2010
It is dangerous to generalise, because there are some great wines, as well as some big disappointments.

Those who made good wines show the characteristic of a warm vintage like the most acclaimed 2009, but with a freshness of 2010. Much less extraction and alcohol feel than in the past years.

CONCLUSIONS

  1. The Robert Parker era is over
  2. Wines are returning to what we call a “more classical” and elegant Bordeaux style (fresh, soft and elegant). These are a new style of wine, combining the tannic structure of the “classical style” of Bordeaux with the “Parker style” of fleshy and round wines, resulting in much better balance
  3. Not a heterogenerous vintage, one must cherry pick
  4. 2020 is a healthy combination of two great vintages: the ripeness of 2009 and the freshness of 2010
  5. Price wise it will still be a good investment and good value for money to drink. 2019 was 30% below 2018 and 2019 was a better vintage. We expect 2020 to be somewhat higher than 2019 (10-15%), but still well below the inferior 2018 vintage and some say even better than 2019 (based on the top wines’ scores, it is certainly the case).

CHATEAU TO WATCH

Following our extensive tasting of Chateaux samples we have highlighted our teams top picks along with estimated price windows based on 2019. If you would like to request a case of two of these wines or have a specific wish list please contact us via the button below. Prices quoted are In Bond per bottle. Wines will be available in 6 or 12 bottle cases.

 

Chateau 2020 Estimate £/bt  Release Price £/bt Critic Scores
Pessac Leognan
Château Carbonnieux Blanc – RELEASED 22-25 23 91-93
Château Carbonnieux Rouge- RELEASED 22-25 23 89-91
Domaine de Chevalier Blanc – RELEASED 60-70 66.50 93-95
Domaine de Chevalier Red – RELEASED 50-55 47.17 96 – 97
Pape Clement Blanc

RELEASED

80-100 89.17 92-94
Pape Clement Rouge

RELEASED

60-75 62.67 94-97
Château Haut-Bailly

RELEASED

85-100 96 93-97
Château Smith Haut Lafitte Blanc

RELEASED

90-95 96 94-96
Château Smith Haut Lafitte Rouge

RELEASED

79-84 96 94-96
St Julien
Branaire Ducru – RELEASED 30-35 31 91-93
Château Lagrange

RELEASED

35-38 35.34 92-94
Leoville Las Cases

RELEASED

190-210 198 95-98
Château Beychevelle – RELEASED 55-65 57.84 95-97
Ducru Beaucaillou

RELEASED

145-165 160 96-98
Leoville Barton – RELEASED 58-64 54 93-95
Leoville Poyferre

RELEASED

65-75 72 93-96
Margaux
D’Issan

RELEASED

42-45 42.17 92-95
Pauillac
Pichon Comtesse de Lalande

RELEASED

127-132 134.50 95-98
Pichon Baron

RELEASED

116-120 110.67 94-97
D’Armailhac – RELEASED 35-37 33 92-94
St Emilion
Vallandraud St Emilion 1er Grand Cru Classe

RELEASED

100-120 106.50 93-96
Troplong Mondot St Emilion 1er Grand Cru Classe

RELEASED

73-76 72 93-96
La Gaffeliere St Emilion 1er Grand Cru Classe

RELEASED

50-70 53 93-96
Château La Croix de Labrie – RELEASED 68-72 74 93-95
Pomerol
Château Gazin – RELEASED 55-65 56.17 94-97
Vieux Château Certan

RELEASED

220-250 240 95-97
Château Clinet

RELEASED

63-67 66.67 93-95
L’Evangile

RELEASED

170-190 185 95-98
St Estephe
Cos d’Estournel

RELEASED

135-150 150 93-96
Lafon Rochet – RELEASED 30-33 27.67 93-94
1st Growths and other high demand Chateau
Château Palmer

RELEASED

198-202 240 95-97
Lynch Bages

RELEASED

81-84 86.67 90-93
Pontet Canet

RELEASED

71-75 74.17 94-97
Château Mouton Rothschild

RELEASED

350-450 433 97-100
Château Margaux

RELEASED

401-440 433 97-100
Château Lafite

RELEASED

486-495 490 97-99
Haut Brion Rouge

RELEASED

355-455 433 97-99
Mission Haut Brion

RELEASED

230-285 275 96-98