New Wine Reports, M&A activity & Majestic EP + Tweets of the Week
Welcome to in the mood for wine — a weekly newsletter on wine for the next gen of wine lovers and investors. This is the first WineLeaks, a curated overview of the wine market, which will be with you every Monday at 10 a.m. (London time).
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In case you’ve missed it, last week, I’ve compiled a work-in-progress database of all vintages reports in all the major investment regions and a list with all my favourite wine experts. Check them out, and if I’ve missed anyone feel free to mention them in the comments.
New Wine Reports
As I am (slowly) writing a piece on Champagne as a safe asset class (stay tuned!), I came across a Decanter report authored by Tim Hall on Krug Grande Cuvée: new 170th edition and vertical tasting ($). The release date of the 170th edition was back in May 2022, and I can now see it out of stock from Berry Brothers & Rudd and Jeroboams (was £158/bottle in bond) but available at a slightly higher price from Cru World Wine and Brunswick.
This edition is made up by mostly the 2014 vintage base wine (55%), which was a difficult year; however, the Krug 170th seems to have impressed the author as a “triumph of compensation, a blend of 195 wines from 12 different years, buttressed heavily (45%) by 2013 reserve wines”.
(Of course, he noted that 2008-based 164th edition was still the best vintage.)
I subscribed to The Wine Independent because of the report on Barolo and Barbaresco 2017, 2018, and 2019 authored by Susan Hulme MW, Spin the Bottle. It features a detailed recollection, analysis and comparison of the three vintages, but this is a great summary of the article:
“Buy the 2018s to drink now, the 2017s to keep 2-3 years, and the 2019s to keep for longer-term aging or to drink sooner as is your preference”.
(I really like that they show pricing range and link their score to the wine-searcher page — a small thing to do but really convenient if you’re looking to buy.)
What to Read
“Majestic rejoins Bordeaux en primeur with 2021-vintage offers“ (Decanter)
Here’s their brochure.
“LVMH buys Napa Valley’s Joseph Phelps Vineyards” (Decanter)
“Moët Hennessy is best known for its champagne portfolio, which includes Moët & Chandon, Krug, Veuve Clicquot, Dom Pérignon, Ruinart and Armand de Brignac, along with spirits such as Hennessy, Ardbeg and Glenmorangie.
However, it also has a formidable portfolio of still wines, featuring the likes of Château Cheval Blanc, Clos des Lambrays, Château Galoupet, Whispering Angel, Cloudy Bay and sweet wine Château d’Yquem.
It already owns the prestigious Newton Vineyard in Napa Valley’s Spring Mountain AVA, and it has now bolstered its Californian range with the Joseph Phelps Vineyards purchase”
“Susan Hulme MW joins The Wine Independent as their new reviewer for Italian wines” (TWI)
“We’re excited to share that we have just published our first Italian wine reviews by regional expert and Master of Wine Susan Hulme. Her in-depth report covers the 2017, 2018, and 2019 vintages in Barolo and Barbaresco, including over three hundred wine reviews. These recent vintages of Barolo and Barbaresco represent a golden era for the Piedmont region and create a bevy of exciting buying opportunities.”
Couldn’t agree more.
“Blind-Tasting: Some UK Supermarket Own-Label Champagnes” (Six Atmospheres)
“My top wines? Tesco Premier Cru Brut is really well put-together by Union Champagne in Avize. It’s probably the wine I’d finish first in this lineup; […] Morrisons English Sparkling 2010 would do very well in any lineup of English Sparkling. It seems as if this has come through the doors of Nyetimber, and the quality would match up with that.”
In this Champagne-heavy edition, I wanted to share this great substack newsletter “Six Atmospheres“ written by Tom Hewson. Very interesting pieces. On the Krug new releases. On 2021 Champagne Vintage.
Tweets of the Week
You can follow the list of wine experts here & I also published my list of fine wine experts.
I’ve seen David Perell’s tweet on logos, but it never crossed my mind that of course it can be applied to wine recommendations! Truly scary. But at the same time not so different from the same-y same-y wine lists that are plastered all over London’s top restaurant chains and hotels and with 4*+ on Vivino …
… and he goes on and on writing, house building, etc.
Until next Monday,
In the mood for wine (a.k.a. Sara Danese)