Bordeaux 2005 trade

One year ago, Robert Parker’s ten-year retrospective review of Bordeaux 2005 was released. Prior to the release of the report, some felt that the critic had initially underrated the vintage. Parker himself had conceded in an interview with Liv-ex in 2012 that although he was “originally worried about the tannin levels in 2005 […] the wines are so concentrated I think they will be just fine – they just need a lot of time.” This, combined with a handful of upgrades in late 2014, led many to anticipate further upgrades across the vintage. Prices began to rise and trading activity increased.

The results of Parker’s tastings revealed 12 ‘perfect’ 100-point wines – up from the two that were awarded three digits in his first in-bottle report. However, with the exception of Haut Brion and Mission Haut Brion, these high scores were concentrated in the Right Bank – a surprise to many.

One year on, trading activity for Bordeaux 2005 has returned to a level seen before interest piqued towards the end of 2014, as the chart above shows. But how have prices reacted?

Between June 2014 and June 2015, when Parker’s report was released, the 2005 vintage wines of the Bordeaux Index gained 10.3%. Since then, increases have been slower: the wines are up 4.9% over the past year on average. Performance has been divided: two thirds are in positive territory over one year; the remainder have declined.

A handful of wines have seen a significant boost. Some of these, including Smith Haut Lafitte and Haut Brion were beneficiaries of Parker’s review. Others owe their successes to current trends in the market. Four of the five second wines of First Growths – which have recently found demand – are represented. Pavillon Rouge 2005 has increased by 18% over the past year despite dropping three points in Parker’s review.

Among those that have declined is Margaux 2005. Parker had twice awarded it a barrel range touching 100 points, making it a candidate for the perfect score last year. The wine instead maintained its score of 98+. It crept up a modest 7.8% in the year ahead of the report but has dipped 5.1% since failing to see an upgrade.

Bordeaux 2005 performances

Scores: www.erobertparker.com. Prices: Liv-ex. Collectors can search fine price performance information at www.cellar-watch.com.