In a year that became infamous for historical curveballs, it is perhaps only fitting that the 2020 Burgundy harvest surprised us, too. Between pandemic-related predicaments and an exceptionally early harvest, this year’s vintage could easily have been a disaster. However, while the quality of this vintage will be somewhat variable, the grapes remained remarkably healthy, and the wines should impress even the most skeptical connoisseurs.
Some wines seem destined for greatness. Founded in Pauillac—one of the most prolific and praised Left Bank appellations of Bordeaux—by the Governor of the Médoc himself in the early 1700s, Château Pontet-Canet has produced some of the most poignant and intriguing Red Bordeaux blends to date.
If you’re eager to add a few radiant red wines to a well-stocked cellar of Bordeaux, or if you’re interested in starting a new Pauillac or Bordeaux collection, save a place for a few bottles of Château Pontet-Canet’s best vintages.
Shiraz grapes grow bountifully in the Land Down Under, where the climate is warm and the sunlight shines bright—particularly in the McLaren Vale wine region. This appellation is celebrated for consistently producing world-class Australian Shiraz—though Roman Bratasuik, owner of the Clarendon Hills winery, prefers to use this grape’s Old World name, Syrah, for his top-rated wines.
As one of the exceptional five first-growth Bordeaux châteaux, Château Lafite Rothschild has enjoyed over a century’s worth of acclaim for its delicately delectable wines. Today, it remains one of the most distinguished labels in the world—and if you are looking to build a top-quality Bordeaux collection, only the best vintages of Château Lafite Rothschild will do.
As one of the highest-rated vintages of the decade, 2010 Burgundy makes an exceptional investment for collectors and casual fans of Burgundy alike. In this guide to the 2010 Burgundy vintage, we’ll look at what made this year so special, which wines are the best of the vintage, and how to get the most value from your collection.
The hotly anticipated release of 2015 Brunello di Montalcino is finally here, and many critics are already raving about the power and purity of these Tuscan wines. After the difficult 2014 vintage (a year that was plagued by cool, wet weather and under-ripe grapes), winemakers had an excellent 2015 season. Hot, dry weather resulted in quality wines that are lush, but not overly ripe, with plush tannins and relatively low acidity. This is a great vintage for Italian wine enthusiasts, especially those looking for exceptional young wines to drink over the next few years.
The 2019 Bordeaux futures campaign is one for the history books. In the wake of a global pandemic, en primeur week was significantly delayed, as were some futures releases. However, what’s incredible about the 2019 Bordeaux vintage is that, despite these hurdles, the quality of the wine is still capturing the attention and imagination of the world’s most knowledgeable wine enthusiasts. Some top critics have had barrel samples delivered directly to them, and early reviews suggest that this is a vintage worthy of your attention. Many of these wines are pure, elegant, and have fine tannins. Just as enticing are their release prices, which are, on average, 30 percent lower than wines of the equally high-quality 2018 vintage.
The last 15 years have yielded some of the best Bordeaux wines in recent history. In particular, five of those years—2005, 2009, 2010, 2015, and 2016—treated critics, collectors, and enthusiasts to early tastings that revealed exceptional quality and suggested these wines would age well for decades. These extraordinary years tend to be compared with one another, too. For example, debate continues over which year wins out when you compare the 2009 and 2010 Bordeaux vintages. And there is still some question regarding how these two vintages stack up against the 2005.
If you’ve been collecting fine wine for any period of time, you know that choosing the perfect wines to add to your portfolio isn’t the hard part of collecting—it’s figuring out the right time to open (or sell) those wines.
The 2009 and 2010 vintages are just two examples of great Bordeaux from a region that has had several excellent years recently. However, this pair of years specifically is known for winning high marks with critics and tantalizing the palates of even the most discerning wine enthusiasts. In the years that immediately followed their production, some predicted that there would be debate for decades over which was the best vintage of the two. That made comparing 2009 vs. 2010 Bordeaux a difficult task at best.
Over the course of more than 100 years, Vega Sicilia has established itself as Spain’s most respected and luxurious winery, and that sterling reputation holds to this day. Many of the world’s leading wine connoisseurs praise the estate’s celebrated flagship wine, Único, including Spanish wine expert Luis Gutiérrez of Wine Advocate. He says this historic Ribera del Duero estate is “one of the greatest in the world” because of its unique terroir and its winemakers’ passion for crafting elegant, multilayered wines.
Though the youngest of all the estates ranked in the Bordeaux classification of 1855, Château Montrose quickly gained fame as an estate capable of producing incomparable wine. Since most years are good years for this estate, choosing from among the best vintages of Château Montrose is no easy task. Whether you intend to hold a bottle as an investment or just long enough to savor a glass at its peak, this guide will help—but buying multiple vintages certainly won’t hurt, either.