Top Bordeaux wines from the 2018 vintage were priced on average only 2.6 percent below the critically-acclaimed and physically-available 2016 vintage, meaning merchants on the London-based Liv-ex market and their customers were selective in the orders they placed, Liv-ex said in its Bordeaux 2018 En Primeur report.
``The wines that saw the highest demand were offered at a significant discount to the current market price of their 2016 alternatives, making them look like an attractive purchase,'' Liv-ex said. ``Others benefited from either tight allocations or unprecedented levels of critical acclaim.''
While critical reaction to the 2018 vintage, which benefited from an unusually hot, dry summer and early autumn, has been very positive, top critics are divided in their assessment of individual estates, according to Liv-ex. Merchant members of the exchange view the 2018 vintage as of good quality but below the highly-rated 2009, 2010 and 2016 vintages, while first growths in 2018 also fell a little short of the level reached in 2015 in the view of merchants, Liv-ex said.
The top 20 U.K. merchants reported sales of En Primeur 2018 wines rising to 80 million pounds ($102 million) this year, above those for the 2015 vintage, which totaled 60 million pounds, but slightly below those achieved for 2016, according to Liv-ex data. 2018 joined the 2016 and 2015 vintages as the best-selling years since the landmark 2010 wines, and followed a run of lesser years in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2017.