The campaign has been hotting up over the last two weeks (after something of a lull) with the first of the big name releases, including Lynch Bages just this morning. Average price increases had been running at 15% on 2014 (still 3% down on 2010). These more recent releases are in the region of 40% (with Chateau Canon St Emilion up 60%). With prices at this level, careful selection is important to secure the best wines from the best communes, many of which will be available on allocation. Also helpful is a keen eye for overlooked properties…Chateau La Dominique springs to mind, rated 94-95 points by James Suckling (‘’a success in 2015’’ – Jancis Robinson)…at £380, this offers great value for a St Emilion Grand Cru Classe with vineyards adjacent to Cheval Blanc. Over in Margaux, Giscours (£390) has attracted the attention of, amongst others, Neal Martin:
‘’ I wager that the 2015 will be the best since the 1961. Time to fall back in love with this great Margaux property.’’ (94-96 pts)
Last week we hosted a vertical tasting and dinner with Chateau Palmer at Davy’s at St James’s. Palmer are yet to release but the evening highlighted the superb value offered by Alter Ego de Palmer (the 2006 was delicious and still showing bright, primary fruit with fresh acidity which should age superbly). Alter Ego (like many of the wines offered) can be offered in cases of 6 bottles… a very affordable way to experience the expertise of this great property.