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February 20, 2017

2014 Bordeaux Re-Scores: Ducru Beaucaillou & Pontet Canet

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Last night James Sucking released his in bottle scores for the 2014 vintage, which he describes as ‘one of the biggest surprises of my 34-year career.’ He affirms that ‘Many wines outperformed their barrel scores by one to three points when I tried them two years ago.’ This is echoed by Philippe Dhalluin, the managing director and winemaker of Château Mouton Rothschild, who stated “The maturation of the wines in the barrel really improved the quality of the wines. I have never seen such an improvement.” In short, Suckling loves the vintage and has awarded stellar scores, which are close behind the 2015 vintage. Of these exceptional rescores we have identified Ducru-Beaucaillou as a stand out, must own wine.

James Suckling has awarded Ducru Beaucaillou 2014 99 points, making it one of its highest ever scoring vintages. We rated this as one of our wines of the vintage, it is a towering Ducru Beaucaillou, which priced at £995 per case of 12 has the lowest Price Over Points Ratio (POP) of any Ducru Beaucaillou with a hugely appealing score of 52. Today’s price of £83 per bottle for a 99 scoring leading Bordeaux is exceptional: the comparable 2009 vintage trades at £2,400 and the 2010 at £1,750 per case of 12.

We released the 2014 for £745 per case and it has risen 30% since release, today’s score of 99 will drive investors to secure it now, with Neal Martin set to re-score the wine in June. It was one of his favourite wines from barrel, which he awarded 94-96 points and considering the upward trend in quality after 20 months in barrel, we can expect this to hit the 96 mark, or surpass this initial indicator. To conclude the universal acclaim for this wine, Antonio Galloni has just awarded it 95+ points stating it is ‘One of the more powerful wines for the year, the 2014 Ducru-Beaucaillou surprises with its sheer concentration.’

Ducru Beaucaillou 2014 is a magnificent wine, which will provide immense pleasure over the coming years. Its rescore now makes it undervalued when compared to other vintages and it has sold out quickly in Bordeaux, we expect the price to be driven up very quickly.

Ducru Beaucaillou WA JS 12×75 POP (JS)
2015 94-96 95-96 £1,275 85
2014 94-96 99 £995 52
2010 98+ 100 £1,750 87
2009 100 96 £2,400 150
2008 95+ 94 £1,230 88
2006 94 95 £1200 80
2005 97 95 £1750 117
2003 94 94 £1,450 104
2000 95 96 £1,750 109

Ducru Beaucaillou 2014, 12×75 – £995 EP

99 Points, James Suckling
Fabulous aromas of crushed berries such as blackberries and blackcurrants, not to mention spices. Wet earth and cedar, too. Complex. Full-bodied, yet agile and complete. A dense center palate. Ultra-round tannins. Everything in the right balance. Wonderful to taste but better to drink in 2022.

In addition, Suckling has awarded Pontet Canet 2014 98 points matching his score for the world-beating 2009 which trades at £1,700 per case of 12. The 2014 is priced today at £760 per case of 12.  As such, £63 for a bottle of 98 point scoring Bordeaux is too good to miss, Suckling describes it as ‘A stunning wine for this vintage.’

Pontet Canet WA JS 12×75 POP (JS)
2015 94-96 97-98 £860 51
2014 93-95 98 £760 42
2012 93 93 £580 45
2010 100 100 £1,700 85
2009 100 98 £1,700 94
2008 96 94 £680 49
2006 94 93 £700 54
2004 92 91 £580 53
2003 95+ 93 £800 62

Antonio Galloni has recently awarded Pontet Canet 2014 95+ points, saying ‘Ripe, juicy tannins wrap around a core of intense dark cherry, plum, spice, lavender and tobacco…The transformation the 2014 has undergone from a delicate, nuanced Pauillac to a wine of depth is quite remarkable.’ This bodes well for its rescore from Neal Martin, who awarded it 93-95 points from barrel. It was originally released for £650 per case of 12, a rise of 16%, so there is still a lot of head-room for price appreciation. That said Pontet Canet 2014 is a return to greatness from the Chateau and a wine that will drink beautifully over the coming years and age for 25 more.

The 2014 vintage surprised many during en primeur and in our 2014 report we stated ’The quality of the 2014 vintage is good, often very good and in a few cases truly exceptional. 2014 is comfortably the best vintage since 2010.’ We posited that it was hugely investible, which it has proven to be. However, 20 months in barrel has added weight, structure to the vintage and now accolades that place it just behind the 2010, 2009 and 2005 vintages, but at a very appealing discount.

Pontet Canet 2014, 12×75 – £760 EP 

98 Points, James Suckling
A stunning wine for this vintage although it’s still a bit shy on the nose (more spice than fruit showing than now). There’s wet earth, too, but on the palate it’s bursting with ripe yet subtle flavors. Very long and complex finish that goes on and on.

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