Opus One 2014 flies out of the blocks, according to merchants
An enthusiastic reception and rapid uptake for the latest vintage of the iconic Napa Bordeaux blend reflect a healthy overall market for California
MERCHANTS IN THE US and UK have reported strong sales for the recently released Opus One 2014 vintage, priced at around £2,500 per 12-bottle case in bond — or £250 per single bottle in the UK and just over $300 per bottle in the US at the time of writing.*
That made it the cheapest of the last 10 Opus One vintages at current sterling prices, according to Liv-Ex.
Decanter’s US correspondent William Kelley rated the 2014 wine at 93 points, compared to 94 for the lauded 2013.
‘We could have sold our allocation many times over,’ said Craig Norton, sales director at Fine & Rare in the UK.
‘2014 Opus One pre-sales are selling very well,’ agreed Justin Grover, president of Fine Wines International in San Francisco.
Hart Davis Hart (HDH) in Chicago sold its allocation too, although this took ‘a bit longer than for the 2013 vintage’.
There is ongoing optimism with respect to the California market in general, though the region is still a relatively small part of the global fine wine investment scene.
Nick Pagoria, vice president and retail sales manager of HDH, told Decanter: ‘California has been solid for us as there is constant demand for the established, high-level wines. Scarcity certainly works in the favour of the smaller “cult” producers.’
In Decanter’s October issue, Elin McCoy suggested that California ‘cult’ wines were becoming overblown. But recent vineyard deals, such as Constellation buying Schrader, indicate the market disagrees – for now.
As Decanter went to press, a harvest heatwave was causing concern for growers in Napa Valley, but it was too early to fully assess its impact. *Price details aided by www.wine-searcher.com
Above: Opus One winery at Oakville, Napa Valley