Wine Investment Friday

This newsletter is designed to bridge the gap between trade and the investor. Each week we aim to help investors better understand the nuances of why some cases appreciate and some standstill. We will unpick the characteristics that construct financial potential to help your money work smarter. 


This week we are analysing a case of:

Krug, Clos du Mesnil – 2006


Looking at the development of the estate in the modern era and why this is a perfect Champagne for a long term hold. 


Beneath the Label: 

Krug is a 6th generation family run estate that has climbed to the very peak of the luxurious world of Champagne production. Their more boutique approach of uncompromising quality has elevated the house in the eyes of the worlds Champagne aficionados. 

Critic Score: 97 Points – Wine Advocate
Champagne vintages are only declared by a house in the very best years. Since 2000 Krug has established just 5 Clos du Mesnil vintages. With the average score of each increasing significantly from pre-2000’s.

Region Rating: Champagne – 86R
To create great Champagne you need a much cooler growing season than for still wines. As such the scores appear lowly but are in fact perfect for the style.

Drinking Window: 2020-2045
Champagnes develop enormously with the mousse and flavour profile drastically altering as it ages. It very much comes down to personal preference as to when is right.

Production Volume:  4,000 cases
This single varietal production comes from a 1.84-hectare plot that dates back to 1648. Making the totals finite and ultimately extremely scarce. 

Summary:
The house ambition is to maintain absolute quality above all else, and this is clearly being achieved quite comfortably. The scores registered are not only class-leading amongst other Champagnes but register this wine as one the top in the world. The central point to take away from this is that this is a wine of exaggerated scarcity. Where other wines of low productions are produced every year, this iteration has far fewer releases. So while rare Burgundies are producing a vintage every year, this particular Champagne is rarely declared. 


“Joesph Krug, a visionary non-conformist with an uncompromising philosophy”.

Krug


Money Matters:

Brand Power: 90/100, rank 21st in JF Tobias Brand Power Metric
Perhaps not as well known as some of the more mainstream Champagnes on a public level. However, within the wine world, Krug is a brand that competes at the very top end of this metric. 

Liquidity: 80%
Top Champagnes are extremely liquid. Perhaps due to the nature of how they are consumed in combination with excitement and celebration. 

Inter-Trade Price Volatility: N/A
A wine too scarce to register on LivEx frequently enough to be referenced. Below shows the ’98 and its mere 7 trades over its entire lifetime. Price transparency is low and as such positive volatility should be expected. 

Price History: 

Summary:
A wine that continues to impress, the attractive liquidity and brand power is absolutely underpinned by the vectors noted in section one. Wines of this quality, produced in such small quantities take on an almost mythic quality which buoys the financial traits. The real world translation of this is a cultish consumer base, who by the very fact they are consuming Krug regularly are well-heeled and motivated to only drink their favourite house. 


Position for Profit: 

The development of this wine through the last two decades has been very impressive. The critic scores show just how hard the estate has pushed to chase perfection. The divergence that we want to explore is that of the pricing gap between pre and post-2000 vintages. It is is what is so exciting about this wine and why it appears to be a real candidate for a long hold. 

Pre 2000 Vintage critic scores: 1983 – 92 / 1995 – 93 / 1996 – 99 / 1998 – 96
Post 2000 Vintage critic scores: 2000 – 94 / 2002 – 98+ / 2006 – 97

The average is clearly on the rise, showing the standard of the wines to sit on a new level. Yet when we look at the pricing of the younger iterations we can see they are quite a significant spread lower. From this, we can deduce that the supply-demand imbalance created through consumption is a strong driver of this wines price.  

Pre 2000 average bottle price = £1560 vs. Post 2000 average bottle price = £767.

Stock up, lock up and come back in 15 years to cash in. 

The Author

Jake Leighton