Now that producers in Burgundy have brought in the last of their 2019 crop, spirits are high across the region. Extremely warm weather and uneven flowering early in the season reduced yields, but the quality of the surviving fruit is exceptional. Early reports show that the grapes are deeply concentrated and intense this year—a quality that could signify great aging potential and value in the future. In this 2019 Burgundy vintage report, we highlight the wines we believe will have the greatest complexity and value this year so that you can make the most informed decisions about how to invest when the vintage is released.
To say first-growth Bordeaux wine is high in quality is an understatement. There are only five first-growth estates in Bordeaux, and each of them crafts some of the most elegant, prestigious, and valuable wines in the world. Wines with official first-growth classifications are often worth hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars more than their lesser-ranked peers and are considered by many to be the cornerstone of any serious French wine collection.
Master of Wine Jancis Robinson says, “I am always banging on about how price is no absolute guide to quality and I believe this is particularly true of Bordeaux.” She goes on to say that although most first growths sell for hundreds or thousands of dollars per bottle, there are plenty of high-quality petits châteaux wines available for a fraction of that price. In fact, it’s possible to find many top-quality and age-worthy wines for less than $200 per bottle. This guide to the best Bordeaux under $200 will help you discover fine red and white wines that have some of the highest quality-to-price ratios on the market.
The vast majority of labels made by Domaine de la Romanée-Conti (DRC) are meant to be aged for decades and not opened a moment too soon. However, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Échezeaux is perhaps the one exception. While you can lay this charming wine down for many years, you can also enjoy it while it’s young. In fact, it often retains a youthful vibrancy even after it’s spent 20 or 30 years in storage.
If you compare Pomerol vs. Saint-Émilion in a blind tasting, can you tell the difference? Even many well-educated Bordeaux connoisseurs can’t tell these wines apart. Because these appellations are neighbors located in the northwestern region of the Right Bank, their climates are very similar and both areas produce rich, complex Merlot-based blends with great aging potential.
The iconic Château Margaux estate is nicknamed the “Versailles of the Médoc.” From its stunning neo-Palladian architecture to its rows of carefully-planted vines, it’s a picturesque estate that’s fit for royalty. The wines themselves are equally alluring. President Thomas Jefferson famously adored these wines, saying, “There couldn’t be a better Bordeaux bottle.” The moody dark berry flavors and heady violet aroma generally present in the grand vin have earned this estate a reputation as one of the world’s greatest wine producers.
What should you do with the bottle of 1982 Salon Le Mesnil that you inherited from your Champagne-loving grandparents? Or the case of 2009 Louis Roederer Cristal that you no longer have room for in your cramped cellar? Selling Champagne online is a great way to make a profit that you can reinvest into your collection. This detailed guide will show you the easiest way to sell your Champagne from the comfort of your home.
There is no Champagne in the world quite like Salon’s blanc de blancs Le Mesnil cuvée. Made from top-quality Chardonnay grapes grown in just one grand cru village and from a single vintage, the wine is an outstanding expression of time and place. Every bottle of Salon is distinctive and potentially legendary—the house only produces a vintage when the quality is phenomenal.
If you ask a serious Burgundy collector which wine they’d love to have in their cellar right now, chances are they will say Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Romanée-Conti. Not only is DRC’s flagship wine one of the most delicious ever created, but it’s also a unicorn wine for Pinot Noir enthusiasts. These wines—particularly the highest-rated vintages—can be nearly impossible to find for sale. Still, these iconic wines do sometimes come on the market, and, when they do, you’ll want to be prepared.
The best vintages of Pétrus have the power to move people. A commenter on the Wine Berserkers forum claimed that after trying 488 wines from 1990, he found that Château Pétrus was his absolute favorite of that year, even over the first-growth wines he tried. In average years, these wines are still unbelievably decadent, but in great years, they are otherworldly. When it comes to investing in Pétrus wine, it’s almost impossible to make a poor decision. As always, though, there are still some vintages that wine enthusiasts consider to be a cut above the rest. This guide will help you find the most legendary Château Pétrus wines for your collection.
Wine drinkers often get confused when they shop for Left Bank Bordeaux, especially if they don’t have a lot of experience reading wine labels from this region. Even some experienced wine enthusiasts aren’t sure exactly what differentiates Médoc vs. Haut-Médoc wines. Some bottles are labeled “Appellation Médoc Contrôlée” (AOC) or have the word “Médoc” in large letters. Other bottles are labeled just “Haut-Médoc.” This guide will help make sense of the incredible wines made in both the Médoc and the Haut-Médoc AOCs, providing all of the information you need to find the best bottles from each region.
Wines from Hermitage are some of the most delicious and rewarding to age. They can taste a little closed off in their youth, but over time they transform into deeply complex wines packed with peppery, smoky flavors. There is also a lot of flavor variety in wines from this region. For example, a wine enthusiast posting on the Wine Berserkers forum tried two bottles of Hermitage at dinner—a 2004 M. Chapoutier Ermitage Le Pavillon and a 2007 Paul Jaboulet Aîné Hermitage La Chapelle. The 2007 wine was flavorful and juicy, but still a little green–a common quality in relatively young Hermitage. The 2004 wine was more complex, aromatic, and much more mature tasting, despite being only a few years older. Although these two estates are located only about three miles apart, the two wines couldn’t have been more different. Terroir, age, and vintage strongly influence Hermitage wine characteristics.