Bordeaux wines dominate fine wine investment. Along with wines from another French region, Burgundy, wine collectors love Bordeaux. Wines from the region make up around 70 per cent of global wine investments.
So, what is it about wines from this particular area that makes them so attractive to investors? As wine production is now a global industry with winemakers everywhere from Chile to China, why do we still love these traditional French wines?
Bordeaux wines come from a region with an ideal climate
First and foremost, Bordeaux is simply the perfect place to make wine. The weather is warm enough to grow plump, fruity grapes. But cool breezes from the Atlantic also mean that it doesn’t get too hot and ensures a long ripening season.
The soil is also ideal. On the highly regarded Left Bank of the Gironde river, there is a mix of gravel, sandy-clay and limestone deposits. This area produces some of the very best wines, but even the Right Bank with its more clay rich soil produces some great vintages. Broadly speaking, wines from the Right Bank tend to use more Merlot than the Left Bank, especially in those areas with limestone deposits.
Bordeaux wines have a long tradition
Bordeaux is arguably the birthplace of fine wines. Like most of the finer things in life, wine production here began with the Romans. They grew grapes for winemaking and the city of Bordeaux along with the surrounding region quickly developed its excellent reputation. The industry boomed in the medieval period but the draining of the Medoc marshes in the 1600s freed up land and really kicked things off.
Many of the wine makers who began in the 1800s are still going today. And it is this long tradition that gives investors confidence in the quality of Bordeaux wines. One thing to note: since the 1800s Bordeaux chateaux are ranked from the most important wine producers known as First Growth down to Fifth Growth at the bottom.
The ageing potential of Bordeaux wines is attractive to investors
One of the most important aspects of any wine for an investor is how well it will age. Take a look at our recent post on how to identify whether a wine will age well for more information. Bordeaux wines age particularly well, and so offer good value for investors looking to see a good return when it is time to sell.
A big reason for this is that Bordeaux wines use Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, which age beautifully. According to French law, for a wine to be called a Bordeaux it must be made from both Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. This, combined with the ability of world-class wine makers to produce perfectly balanced wines, means that many Bordeaux wines will get better with time.
Our pick of Bordeaux wines to invest in today
1.Château Margaux, 2017
Rich and elegant, this is a brilliantly well-balanced Bordeaux red from one of our favourite chateaux. A great one to set aside for a few years. We recommend enjoying it at its best, which will be in 2024.
2. Château l’Evangile, 2013
With its hints of raspberry and cherry, we love this particular vintage. Made at Château l’Evangile by the experts from Chateau Lafite it’s well worth seeking out.
3. Château Smith Haut Lafitte, Pessac-Léognan, 2016
Another one to put away for a few years, this dense and smoky wine will age wonderfully. Beautifully balanced and well worth waiting for.