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  • Jancis Robinson
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  • Jancis Robinson
4 Jul 2008 is a new business venture based in the UK aimed at wine lovers who want to buy Bordeaux en primeur but don't want to buy a full 12 bottles of every wine.


My fellow wine writer Charles Metcalfe is involved with the selection and explains, "The idea is to offer top wines en primeur to wine lovers who will actually drink them. With prices of first growth bordeaux starting at around £2,500 per dozen (excluding duty and VAT), no wonder they've become just another item in investment portfolios.


"Until now, the only way to buy en primeur has been by the unbroken case. With, you can pick and mix from the selection I have chosen. So, your case might include four bottles of first growths, four of seconds, and two each of Cru Bourgeois and Sauternes."


Roland McCormack, managing director of Bristol & West Mortgages, had the initial idea and Nick Miller, with whom Charles worked at the magazine Wine magazine and the International Wine Challenge, is also involved.


Their first and current offering is a selection of 2007 bordeaux bought from Dubos Frères in Bordeaux through UK merchants Goedhuis.  The wine is initially bought and held in the name of Ltd but ownership of the wines is transferred to the customer once wine is shipped to London City Bond's Vinotheque storage facility (see Where to store wine in the UK), Roland McCormack tells me.


On the face of it, this new scheme does not look like the cheapest way to acquire Bordeaux futures but, like purple pager Neville Blech's scheme, it does look like a useful option for those whose sole interest in wine is to drink it. Neville made a similar offer for the 2004 and 2005 vintages but reports that it was an administrative nightmare. He is still offering some wines from older vintages at

For more details of the new company, see