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Pavie ’98 at $3,150 Sells for Most This Year on Liv-Ex in London

Chateau Pavie
Chateau Pavie at St Emilion in the Bordeaux wine region of France. Photographer: Tim Graham/Getty Images

Three cases of 1998 Chateau Pavie, a wine estate promoted in the 2012 Saint-Emilion classification, climbed to 1,945 pounds ($3,150) in the past week on Liv-ex, its highest level this year and within 5 percent of its record.

Pavie prices have risen since its elevation to the ranks of the top four Bordeaux growers in Saint-Emilion in September last year. It now rates as a Premier Grand Cru Classe A alongside Chateau Cheval Blanc, Chateau Ausone and Chateau Angelus in the classification, which replaced one dating from 1996.

The 1998 vintage of Pavie has more than doubled from the 920 pounds at which it sold on Liv-ex in July 2008, at the start of the financial crisis, according to data on Liv-ex’s Cellar Watch website. While the Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 index of Bordeaux wines from the past 10 years has fallen 6 percent since mid-March, some Saint-Emilion growers have outperformed rivals from the left bank of the Dordogne river and older vintages of top estates are in demand.

“The ones I’d be looking to buy are the more mature vintages, which have a nice solid customer base,” said Chris Smith, investment manager at The Wine Investment Fund in London. “People are actually opening this stuff and drinking it, so supply is falling.”

Pavie 1998 has climbed 34 percent from the 1,450 pounds at which it traded in August 2012, before its promotion gave a boost to prices, according to data on Cellar Watch. The Liv-ex 50 is up 4 percent over the same period.

Merlot Grapes

A single case of Pavie ’98 sold for 2,045 pounds in October last year, setting a Liv-ex record which the price is now once more approaching.

The estate, on the right bank of the Dordogne, was acquired by Gerard and Chantal Perse in 1998 and has about 35 hectares (86 acres) under vines, predominantly Merlot with some Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon.

The 1998 Pavie was awarded 95 points by U.S. critic Robert Parker, the first in a run of vintages to score that level or above, according to data on the website.

The wine ranks as the estate’s seventh most expensive vintage in the past 15 years, according to merchant data compiled by Liv-ex.

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