A case of 2000 Chateau Mouton Rothschild, a Medoc first-growth wine estate, fetched a record 10,500 pounds ($17,100) on Liv-ex as Bordeaux vintages becoming available for drinking attracted more demand than younger wines.
The deal, on Dec. 13, came just nine days after a similar case sold at a five-month low of 9,810 pounds, according to data on the London-based market’s Cellar Watch website. While that was below recent levels, the broader trend in the vintage has been up, as the price gained 26 percent in the past 15 months.
The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index tracking top Bordeaux wines has declined for seven of the past eight months, having erased all of the gains it made in the first 10 weeks of the year. The index has fallen about 10 percent since mid-March as collectors and investors, deterred by prices of recent vintages, have sought older wines or diversified outside the region.
“Merchants were feeling bullish entering 2013, following two years of market decline,” Liv-ex said in a blog commentary. “Unless December sees a 10 percent-plus bounce in prices, it seems that the market’s early hopes for the year will be dashed.”
The 2000 vintage of Mouton is 1 percent above the peak of 10,400 pounds at which it traded in June 2011 as Chinese demand for Bordeaux first growths was driving prices. Its previous high for this year of 10,300 pounds was touched last month, according to data on Cellar Watch.
The 2000 Mouton still ranks as the Pauillac estate’s most-expensive wine of the past 30 years, according to merchant prices collated by Liv-ex on its Cellar Watch website. It is trading at more than quadruple the level of 2,300 pounds for which it sold on Liv-ex in August 2003.
The 2000 Mouton was given a rating of 96+ points on a 100-point scale by U.S. wine critic Robert Parker in an online tasting note in June 2010, putting it among the estate’s five top-scoring wines of the past 15 years, according to data on the eRobertParker.com website.
Mouton Rothschild has 84 hectares (208 acres) planted with red-grape vines. The vines have an average age of 44 years and are planted at a density of 10,000 per hectare, according to Mouton’s website.
The vineyard, owned by Baron Philippe de Rothschild SA, was promoted in 1973 to the ranks of the top Bordeaux first-growth estates on the left bank of the Gironde estuary, joining the four other estates designated in the classification drawn up for Napoleon III’s 1855 Paris Exhibition.
Mouton has been under the control of the Rothschild family since being acquired by Baron Nathaniel de Rothschild in 1853. The property was developed extensively by Baron Philippe, who ran the estate from 1922 until his death in 1988, and since then has been managed by his daughter Philippine.