Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

Tasting notes, varietals, grapes - anything related to wine
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
François Audouze
Posts: 1279
Joined: July 26th, 2010, 2:49 am
Location: near Paris (picture : Tokay 1819 not Hungarian drunk in May 2010)

Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#1 Post by François Audouze » March 29th, 2020, 7:04 am

I have made a study of what I drink for the last 20 years, because I have a data base on that, for 16285 wines drunk. I chose a criteria of age which is : drunk when the wine has less than 20 years, or when the wine has 20 years or more. It is not a study on millesimes, but a study on age of consumption. To understand well what it means, let us take the year 1990. The wines of 1990 that I drank on the period 2000 – 2009 are in the category ‘less than 20 years’ and the wines of 1990 that I drank on the period 2010 – 2020 are in the category ’20 years or more’.
I studied that per region or per color of wine.
Having made this study I found that over the time, there is a collapse of Bordeaux and an explosion of champagnes in my consumption.

Image

Let’s first look at general consumption in three periods: 2000 to 2007, 2008 to 2013 and 2014 to 2020 (as of March 15). These are periods of 417 weeks, 313 weeks and 324 weeks, of which the numbers of wine drunk are fairly close: 5357 - 5973 – 4955 (line 2).
In the first period I was still active in my industrial companies, which explains a lower consumption, or at least, I drank in my industrial activity wines for which I did not always take notes. The second period is one of full activity in my hobby. The pace drops a bit in the third period, and it's not impossible that age plays a role.
The distribution of consumption between wines of '20 years and more' and wines of 'less than 20 years' is fairly stable, the percentage of 20 years and more evolving thus: 51% - 50.3% and 52.3%.

Note that I drink two wines per day over twenty years, which is important. But the wines of my dinners are shared between ten or eleven people and those on other occasions are drunk between three and ten people, and the wines drunk at the winemaker’s place or in the salons are served in portions for about twenty people, this which makes my consumption relatively low, to which is added the use of a timpani to spit out what I drink, except the champagnes.

Second note, it is generally said that I drink only old wines, but young wines represent 48,8% of what I drink, because there are many occasions in which young wines are served like winemaker’s place or restaurants, or dinner in friends’ homes.


Image

Now let's look at the situation of the red Bordeaux, which shows a particular collapse. Consumption of red Bordeaux fell from 3 per week to 1.6, which is almost halved. And compared to general consumption, the red Bordeaux decreased from 23.2% to 10.6%. It has dropped by more than half. For Bordeaux under 20 years, it is a great collapse, with a division by three, of 1.2 wine per week to 0.4. This is certainly voluntary, since I find that the red Bordeaux of less than 20 years are far from having reached what they are able to express. But it is also linked to the fact that after buying the 2000 vintage, I stopped buying Bordeaux for two reasons: on the one hand, their price, since for many wines the price of old wines is lower than the price of recent wines from great years and secondly because it is unlikely that I will drink the young Bordeaux in my lifetime. I have only kept purchases of recent wines when I benefit from allocations which require me to buy all vintages. I am surprised that the old Bordeaux wines, which I adore, fell by one third in my consumption over the period 2014-2020 because I have stocks in my cellar that would have allowed me to drink them, even without purchasing. The reason is probably the rise of champagnes.

Image

My consumption of champagnes has almost tripled, with consumption per week of 1.8 - 4.9 and 5.2 bottles per week. The consumption of old champagnes has almost increased fivefold. I drink almost twice as much old champagnes as old red bordeaux, whereas I drank three times less in the first period.

Image

If we look at what is neither champagne nor red bordeaux we see a set of great stability, which seems to show that there has been a phenomenon of communicating vases between red bordeaux and champagnes, for reasons that are not of substitution, because the construction of wine's types accompanying the meals is little changed but it is due to a love for champagnes and especially old champagnes and a disenchantment for the young red bordeaux which reflected on the old ones too.

What can be taken from this study? I am not really a normal consumer, so my experience cannot be taken as general. But contrarily to people who write on wines, I never drink a wine because I have an obligation to drink it because I will publish a study. I drink a wine because I want to drink it and I am fully free.
I have discovered old champagnes lately, in the 90ies, and my love of old champagnes has dramatically expanded. But why has it only affected my love for red Bordeaux. I think that I have been influenced by the evolution of the prices at the beginning of the 21st century. Crazy prices (for my opinion) when buying and crazy prices in restaurants.

Image
I could have thought that the decrease of Bordeaux would have helped a development of Rhône. It is not the case. And despite a very strong explosion of Burgundy prices, Burgundy has not decreased.
The more probable explanation of the collapse of red Bordeaux is that I am a disappointed lover of red Bordeaux.
Kind regards

François Audouze

ITB for # 150 bottles a year, sold through dinners

User avatar
François Audouze
Posts: 1279
Joined: July 26th, 2010, 2:49 am
Location: near Paris (picture : Tokay 1819 not Hungarian drunk in May 2010)

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#2 Post by François Audouze » March 29th, 2020, 7:11 am

note : confinement helps to make such studies !!!
Kind regards

François Audouze

ITB for # 150 bottles a year, sold through dinners

User avatar
Brian S t o t t e r
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1463
Joined: April 21st, 2015, 6:05 am
Location: St. Louis, MO
Contact:

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#3 Post by Brian S t o t t e r » March 29th, 2020, 7:40 am

Your images aren't showing up.
CT: InZinity

2020 contenders for WOTY:
2017 Goodfellow Family Cellars Durant Vineyard Chardonnay
2015 Laherte Frères Champagne Blanc des Blancs Extra Brut Les Grands Crayeres
2001 Joh. Jos. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese
2015 Josef Walter Hundsruck Spätburgunder "J"

R.Oesterle
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 908
Joined: June 14th, 2010, 11:18 am

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#4 Post by R.Oesterle » March 29th, 2020, 8:13 am

Roman
°°°°°°

User avatar
François Audouze
Posts: 1279
Joined: July 26th, 2010, 2:49 am
Location: near Paris (picture : Tokay 1819 not Hungarian drunk in May 2010)

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#5 Post by François Audouze » March 29th, 2020, 8:26 am

Brian,
it can depend on the system with which I posted this article. Roman gave a link to the article in my blog.
Kind regards

François Audouze

ITB for # 150 bottles a year, sold through dinners

User avatar
Ed Baum
Posts: 67
Joined: June 5th, 2009, 10:33 am

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#6 Post by Ed Baum » March 29th, 2020, 9:30 am

Interesting analysis, François. I am working from a different data source (CellarTracker), but I have a good record of the consumption of bottles from my cellar since 2006. This misses wines drunk from other people's cellars and bought off of restaurant wine lists, but its still interesting (at least to me).

I divided my consumption into 3 groups, 2006-2010, 2011-2015, and 2016 to present. My hypothesis going in was that my Bordeaux consumption would go way down and my Burgundy consumption up. It wasn't so simple.

My Bordeaux consumption went from 24% in 2006-2010 to 15% in 2011-2015 and 14% in 2-16-present. I guess my Bordeaux consumption went down 10 years ago and has been stable since then. I haven't bought Bordeaux in any size since the 2003 vintage, so I think that will continue to go down.

My Burgundy consumption was much more level that I thought, 16% in 2006-2010, 20% in 2011-2015, and 16% in 2016 to present. Since my love for Burgundy has only increased, and I own more Burgundy than any other category, I was quite surprised. I think that I am consciously or subconsciously not drinking Burgundy as much as i'd like because it is so expensive and I can't afford it these days the way I could 10-15 years ago. Lesson - drink more Burgundy!

My Rhone consumption was fairly level at 18% in 2006-2010, 19% in 2011-2015, and 20% in 2016 to present. Same for California (nearly all Pinots) at 18%, 22%, and 20% for the same periods.

I also like Champagne, but pricing changes have made me buy less, and I hold Champagne much less long than Bordeaux or Burgundy, so that has taken my Champagne consumption from 14% in 2011-2015 to 7% in 2016 to present. I need to buy more Champagne, even if it means more NV and less vintage to make it more affordable. Not the first time cellar analysis has told me to buy more Champagne!

The one category that jumps out at me is Other France going from 2% in 2011-2015 and 2006-2010 up to 12% in 2016-present. I drink a lot more Jura wines and roses from Provence these days, and that is clearly showing up in the numbers.

Nothing better than spending an hour with my cellar during shelter in place and disproving my own hypotheses - thanks for the inspiration, François!

P L owet
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 273
Joined: January 9th, 2012, 12:07 pm
Location: Bethesda, MD

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#7 Post by P L owet » March 29th, 2020, 9:48 am

François Audouze wrote:
March 29th, 2020, 7:04 am
... I find that the red Bordeaux of less than 20 years are far from having reached what they are able to express. But it is also linked to the fact that after buying the 2000 vintage, I stopped buying Bordeaux for two reasons: on the one hand, their price, since for many wines the price of old wines is lower than the price of recent wines from great years and secondly because it is unlikely that I will drink the young Bordeaux in my lifetime.

I am surprised that the old Bordeaux wines, which I adore, fell by one third in my consumption over the period 2014-2020 because I have stocks in my cellar that would have allowed me to drink them, even without purchasing. The reason is probably the rise of champagnes.

But why has it only affected my love for red Bordeaux. I think that I have been influenced by the evolution of the prices at the beginning of the 21st century. Crazy prices (for my opinion) when buying and crazy prices in restaurants...

...And despite a very strong explosion of Burgundy prices, Burgundy has not decreased...
...The more probable explanation of the collapse of red Bordeaux is that I am a disappointed lover of red Bordeaux.
Francois,
Cutting through your analysis, it seems pretty simple. You are enjoying champagne more, so something else has to be crowded out. You don’t enjoy young Bordeaux so that’s easy to eliminate. (Did you ever enjoy them?) And you find yourself grabbing old/have burgundy more than old Bordeaux because of preference, not necessarily disappointment. Prices seem to be a red herring, given even greater explosion in burg prices.

If you’re really disappointed in the old Bordeaux bottles you are opening/experiencing, you haven’t yet explained. Sounds instead that you have great cellar choices and even better ones!😀
Regards,
Peter
Peter L owet

User avatar
Brian S t o t t e r
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1463
Joined: April 21st, 2015, 6:05 am
Location: St. Louis, MO
Contact:

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#8 Post by Brian S t o t t e r » March 29th, 2020, 9:55 am

Thanks!
CT: InZinity

2020 contenders for WOTY:
2017 Goodfellow Family Cellars Durant Vineyard Chardonnay
2015 Laherte Frères Champagne Blanc des Blancs Extra Brut Les Grands Crayeres
2001 Joh. Jos. Prum Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling Spätlese
2015 Josef Walter Hundsruck Spätburgunder "J"

User avatar
Howard Cooper
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 18535
Joined: May 30th, 2009, 8:37 am
Location: Rockville, MD

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#9 Post by Howard Cooper » March 29th, 2020, 12:00 pm

Francois,

I also have increased my consumption of Champagne over the past few years and am interested in what you are doing more specifically. Are you drinking/buying more major houses or are there grower Champagnes that you are buying and drinking. What producers (both houses and growers) do you particularly like. What percentage of older vs. younger Champagnes are you drinking (I will let you define younger vs. older)?

For me, I never liked Champagne that much until about 15 years or a little more ago when friends started bringing Champagnes as starters to our monthly Burgundy group tasting. I started liking more and more of them. When I first started buying Champagne, I was buying mostly grower Champagne - two particular favorites were Cedric Bouchard and Bereche. But, in more recent years I have really started falling in love with some better wines from larger houses. I have liked Dom Ruinart for a while (a tasting in DC with Frédéric Panaïotis, the winemaker of Dom Ruinart, in around 2007 or 2008 or so was really the epiphany event for me where the light really went on with regard to Champagne). In the last 3-4 years or so, I have started loving Taittinger CdC. With prices rising for grower Champagne there really isn't much of a price premium anymore for CdC (especially over say Bouchard where prices have been going up a lot). A champagne I am just really starting to like a lot is Delamotte where I have very much enjoyed the 2008 and recently tasted the 2012 and found it very promising, although very young.

I know that you probably care about pricing less than I do, but I am interested in what you are buying both in terms of wineries and vintages.

Thanks.
Howard

"That's what I do. I drink and I know things." Tyrion Lannister

User avatar
Mark Golodetz
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 6720
Joined: May 29th, 2009, 8:49 pm

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#10 Post by Mark Golodetz » March 29th, 2020, 12:11 pm

Bordeaux consumption is pretty static for me. As my cellar gets older, I find I am liking the wines more, but competition is fierce as I am also finding a lot of interesting lesser appellation wines such as Bandol and Madiran. Burgundy consumption is also about the same.

Champagne consumption is on the rise though, as it becomes the white wine of choice, as I have practically stopped buying white Burgundy, and my wife is no Riesling fan. I bought several cases of Roederer NV this year on close out, and interspersed them with a lot of twenty year plus NVs from a cellar I purchased. Both are sadly now close to finished.

I am also buying a lot of Tete de Cuvees usually from the UK. They are mostly too young, so resting awhile. And finally of course when I want a treat, I open the Piper Rare 2002, and keep the vulgar bottle it comes in out of sight.
Last edited by Mark Golodetz on March 29th, 2020, 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
ITB

Bill Johnson
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 10
Joined: January 15th, 2020, 1:57 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#11 Post by Bill Johnson » March 29th, 2020, 12:56 pm

Thanks, François; that is interesting. My theory is that you started to drink more Champagne when you started spitting everything else. :)
stefan

Joshua Kates
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1458
Joined: October 30th, 2011, 6:31 am

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#12 Post by Joshua Kates » March 29th, 2020, 3:49 pm

Just to be clear you drink 816 bottles annually on average, Francois,

No? That's pretty amazing!
Mark Twain, when asked whether he believed in child baptism, replied: "Believe in it? I've seen it!"

User avatar
Robert Pollard-Smith
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 5323
Joined: June 3rd, 2009, 9:11 am
Location: Always on LSD, except when traveling

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#13 Post by Robert Pollard-Smith » March 29th, 2020, 6:41 pm

"I am not really a normal consumer"

M. Audouze, please add this to your signature. [cheers.gif]
He's like a star on a foggy morning
When you think he's near, he's far away

User avatar
Markus S
Posts: 6591
Joined: May 20th, 2010, 7:27 am

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#14 Post by Markus S » March 30th, 2020, 7:10 am

Your weekly consumption of 1.6 bottles of Bordeaux is about 1600% higher than mine. [swoon.gif]
$ _ € ® e . k @

User avatar
François Audouze
Posts: 1279
Joined: July 26th, 2010, 2:49 am
Location: near Paris (picture : Tokay 1819 not Hungarian drunk in May 2010)

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#15 Post by François Audouze » March 30th, 2020, 7:25 am

Thank you for all the comments, they are very interesting.

Ed, you made an analysis in a similar way. It helps to understand what happened which is sometimes different from what we think. Thank you for your testimony.

Peter, your summary is exact, but I have not a lower interest in old red Bordeaux and I have written that I was surprised that they decreased, becaus I love them.

Howard, I will answer in another message.

Bill, you could be right because I need the pleasure that alcohol gives, but that I want to limit.
Kind regards

François Audouze

ITB for # 150 bottles a year, sold through dinners

User avatar
François Audouze
Posts: 1279
Joined: July 26th, 2010, 2:49 am
Location: near Paris (picture : Tokay 1819 not Hungarian drunk in May 2010)

Re: Collapse of Bordeaux and explosion of champagnes in my consumption

#16 Post by François Audouze » March 30th, 2020, 8:06 am

Here is my consumption of champagnes per Producer :

Total (3955) - Krug (400) - Dom Pérignon (391) - Salon (266) - Laurent Perrier (189) - Bollinger (188) - Pol Roger (175) - Selosse (170) - Henriot (166) - Dom Ruinart (136) - Moët & Chandon (135) - Taittinger (123) - Veuve Clicquot (122) - The 3 Heidsieck (121) - Roederer (118) - Delamotte (105) - Mumm (104) - Philipponnat (78) - Deutz (68) - Pommery (67) - Billecart Salmon (58) - Others (775 = 19,6%)

It shows that the price is not necessarily a criteria taken in account, because Krug is the winner because I love it.
For Dom Pérignon, I try to compensate what I missed. Before I met Richard Geoffroy, I thought that Dom Pérignon was a bling-bling champagne, made for nightclubs or to show off. It was a pure hazard which made me know Richard and since then I am in love with old Dom Pérignon.

I have a special love for Salon which I discovered in the mid 80ies when it was completely uknown. I bought then Salon which is highly represented in my cellar.
Laurent Perrier could be higher in the ranking because I love the Grand Siècle, the most romantic champagne, but during a certain period they decided to increase stupidly their prices, and I abandonned this champagne for nearly a decade.

The position of Selosse is very high, because I like Anselme and his champagnes.

The champagnes which are not from the main houses represent nearly 20% of my consumption, and if they do not represent more it is by laziness. I have not visited many houses, and I buy where I can acquire old champagnes. I love Pierre Péters, Diebolt Vallois, Egly Ouriet, Agrapart, de Souza, but I cannot say that I am a specialist of these champagnes
Kind regards

François Audouze

ITB for # 150 bottles a year, sold through dinners

Post Reply

Return to “Wine Talk”