deVine Thoughts

May 11, 2021

2020 Bordeaux Futures Campaign

Filed under: deVine's Daily Blog Article — Dirk @ 9:59 pm

Author: Dirk Chan

For only the 2nd time ever, Bordeaux has had a trio of great years – 2018, 2019 and now 2020. The last and only other time this occurred was 1988, 89 and 1990. Thus, we are announcing there will be a Futures Campaign for the 2020, the so-called “Covid Vintage”.

How does Futures work you ask – well at its most basic level, you’re purchasing unfinished wine – you pay for it in full now, and in two years time, they arrive and you have some great Bordeaux to cellar for some time before enjoying the fruits of your patience. The wines when bottled will be 10-15% higher so you get a price break. Nowadays, you buy futures so you can get your hands on a bottle or two of something great and rare. Bordeaux being one of the great wines in the world – at the top end, demand far out strips availability and Futures may be the only way of ensuring you get your hands on some illustrious houses.

Unlike last year, the wineries have sent out whole bottles to the critics ahead of time, even though some critics were able to attend tastings in Bordeaux in late April. Thus, there are way more critic reviews and scores this time around than the same time last year. So far, it appears 2020 will be a Right Bank vintage, so the Merlot dominant appellations of St. Emilion and Pomerol will be highly sought after while Margaux and Pessac Leognan hits some high spots from the Cabernet dominant Left bank. Of course, the great Growths with their deep pockets will always make a great wine irrespective of weather conditions, but overall, 2020 was an exceptionally warm, hot and dry vintage especially for June, July, August until mid-September and those old properties with old vines were best able to withstand the hydric stress.

The pricing appears to be an increase of a few percent, thus a little more expensive than the giveaway pricing from last year, but still quite a bit cheaper than 2018. Giving the April frost issues that decimated crops throughout France, you know 2021 will be a more challenging vintage and prices on what’s in the system will be going up to recoup some of the potential losts. Alas, this kind of pricing provides a rare opportunity to buy some higher Classified Growths that has previously been out of reach, so don’t hesitate, just dive in.

For those seeking the absolute top-tier, please drop us an email so we can help. It gets harder and harder every year to get the highest scoring most prestigious wines, some wines we get one 3pack. Of course, there isn’t enough to go around as every retailer wants some of the superstars leading to some frenzy buying and quick sellouts and staying up all night waiting for new releases/offers.

As usual, items offered will be sold on a first-come first served basis and in some cases maximums applied. In many cases we won’t be able to go back for more of something once it sells out and if we do, price will be second tranche (release) pricing.

If you’ve subscribed to Futures before, you will be automatically enrolled for this year’s campaign. For those new to the game, please subscribe to the 2020 Bordeaux Futures Offerings using this link –

It is a two step confirmation, you will have to click the link sent to your email address. This ensures you get the offers as soon as we release them. Any unsold product will go on the main website two days after the offerings. As usual, we’ll be updating each product with running counts of what’s left for sale as best we can. Subscribers can expect two offerings per week over 3 or 4 weeks beginning next week, the campaign will end early to mid June.

We’ll be looking for some less expensive reds from the Right Bank Satellites. I’m seeing some great wines from Cru Bourgeois to Satellites that will retail around $50 – these are great earlier drinkers, a smattering of 1855 5th Growths around $80 (which we rarely see) and even some top bottlings around $100, so there is wines to consider at all price levels. Sauternes will be limited and expensive for 2020 as the weather did not cooperate for botrytis until the bitter end and yields were down substantially.

Bottom line, if you’ve been hesitant to get into the Bordeaux Futures game, jump in now, there may be never be another great opportunity as this, we won’t likely see this kind of pricing for the 2021’s.

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