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September 15, 2014

Opus One 2011 New Release

opus one

Opus One is a powerhouse and one of the wine world’s strongest global brands. It is hugely sought after and despite its ample production, sells out almost overnight, creating an immediate perennial price rise. Traditionally, Opus One is released every year at 8 AM on 1st September through the Place de Bordeaux. However, on August 22nd the world received the sad news that Baroness Philippine de Rothschild, owner of Chateau Mouton Rothschild had passed away and out of respect for her passing, the release date of Opus One 2011 was moved to today. We are delighted to be able to offer a limited parcel of the Opus One 2011 at the first tranche release price of £900 per case of six bottles.

The genesis of Opus One is one of privilege, a joint venture between two wine giants and leaders in innovation, Robert Mondavi and Baron Philippe de Rothschild. It represents a fusion between two competing styles, the traditional king of dominant Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot blends, Bordeaux and the New World’s answer to this, Napa Valley. Philippe de Rothschild was, from the beginning, adamant that Opus One be released through the Place de Bordeaux and Mondavi eventually acquiesced. This has allowed Opus One to establish an enviable global market. As one might expect it maintains pride of place in US restaurants and hotels; in Europe it is sold out in a week on the Place de Bordeaux: the icing on the cake is that it is incredibly strong in Asia – Japan is its biggest market outside of the US.

Production is similar to Lafite and Mouton Rothschild at 25,000 cases a year, however, due to the immense popularity there is already an apparent shortfall in supply. The reason for this is that it is still priced very competitively against its Bordeaux equivalent First Growths, particularly given its incredible power, voluptuous mouthfeel and stunning purity. As one can see from the table below, the price rises immediately from first tranche release, for example the 2010 was released this time last year and has already passed £1,000 a six bottle case; it pays to secure a case on release.
Opus One Score Price
2011 92+ £900
2010 97 £1,000
2009 94+ £1,000
2008 95 £1,115
2007 96 £1,200
2006 89 £1,250
2005 93+ £1,300
2004 93+ £1,300

The 2011 vintage was marked by cooler weather, reducing the number and size of each grape cluster and as a result of draconian sorting methods, resulted in increased concentration of fruit. Therefore, the 2011 vintage of Opus One is attractive to European and Asian collectors, displaying a Bordeaux classical style, with a lovely freshness, defined structure and delightful approachability. As Antonio Galloni states, ’2011 Opus One may turn out to be one of the surprises of the year. A brilliant, precise wine, the 2011 impresses for its energy’. It has an initial score of 92+, with super potential in the future.

The winery is located in Oakville, one of the most central wine regions in the Napa Valley. The valley straddles the Mayacamas and Vaca Mountain ranges, which create cool yet extremely sunny conditions, perfect for high quality grape growing. Opus One is grown on densely planted vineyards, bounded by a recently built state of the art winery. The Estate’s buildings are defined by colonnades on either side, designed to blend in with the surrounding rolling hills and stylistically synthesise old and new world aesthetics, in the same way the wine combines the best features of Napa and Bordeaux. The limestone winery and the world beating wine have become a symbol and the apogee of great American winemaking.

Every year grapes are sorted tirelessly after harvest, reaching the winery with wonderful sugar and phenolic ripeness. The winery boasts the best winemaking technology available and the wine is aged for 18 months in new French oak (barrique) and then for an additional 18 months in bottle before it is released to the market. The assemblage this year is 71% Cabernet, 11% Merlot, 9% Petit Verdot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 1% Malbec.

Opus One may be managed by one of the greatest Estates of Bordeaux, however, unlike its parent it still offers collectors and investors a large incentive on release!

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