Despite Robert Parker’s recent retirement from reviewing Bordeaux, his scores continue to have a profound impact on price. With Parker’s influence likely to decline as time goes on, there has been considerable discussion around what or who will influence the market next. Will there be an heir to Parker’s throne, or will a system based on consensus or average scores emerge as the market’s new barometer of wine quality in Bordeaux?
As a preliminary exploration of this issue, Liv-ex has measured the correlation between individual critic scores and the prices of the last ten physical vintages of the Bordeaux First Growths. We tested a sample of four popular critics: Robert Parker, Neal Martin, James Suckling and Jean Marc Quarin.
The chart above shows how closely correlated the prices of these wines are with scores from the respective critics. The results suggest that Parker Points still enjoy the greatest correlation with price, although the other sampled critics are not far behind.
Naturally there are many factors influencing any market, and fine wine is no different. For example, brand, vintage quality and age are also likely to influence fine wine prices. In addition, there may be issues with the direction of causation in our analysis, with scores perhaps being influenced by prices – blind tastings apart – or being correlated with each other. It will be interesting to observe how the market eventually choses its successor to Parker Points.