The transaction on Oct. 4 was 4 percent below the level of 1,620 pounds at which it traded at the end of August, and 20 percent down from the 1,956 pounds a case at which it traded in July 2011, soon after market release, when Chinese demand for top Bordeaux was peaking.
The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index has fallen since mid-March following a subdued response to the sales campaign for Bordeaux 2012 wine futures. While gains in the first three months of the year mean the benchmark is still up 2 percent since the end of December, wine investors have been looking for price growth beyond the core Bordeaux markets as Chinese demand has dropped.
“Asia seems to have been pretty quiet,” Chris Smith, an investment manager at The Wine Investment Fund in London, said by phone Oct. 2, citing “fairly weak demand” from the region. The fund, invested in Bordeaux, manages $50 million.
The 2010 Leoville-Las Cases ranks as the estate’s third-highest-priced wine of the past 10 years, lagging only those from 2009 and 2005, according to merchant prices collated by Liv-ex on its Cellar Watch website.
It was rated 96+ on a 100-point scale by U.S. critic Robert Parker in a February 2013 online tasting note, making it the fourth-highest ranked vintage of the past 15 years.
Leoville-Las Cases is in the Saint-Julien district north of the city of Bordeaux, and is part of a larger estate that was divided in the nineteenth century. It was designated a second-growth vineyard in the classification drawn up for Napoleon III’s 1855 Paris Exhibition, which remains in force.