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EP offer

We seem to have more and more EP offers outside of the normal Bdx, Burgundy, Rhone.

Is this part of TWS’s strategy?
If so what’s behind it?

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Several of us tried to ask variations of this question during the Lunch with Pierre Mansour yesterday. We were brushed off with very politician answers.

I think there’s a combination of factors around managing/improving supplier relations, hype and getting people who might otherwise only buy a few bottles to committing to a case.

The flip side is it does provide fun (at least at the current levels, although if it gets much bigger it might cease to be so) and get us a few quid a bottle of wines that a lot of us would have bought at least a few of anyway.

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There’s also the selling wine before they’ve bought it, so they know exactly how much to buy.

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My limited understanding of the process is that the original attraction for cash-strapped producers was they got a barrel of cash up front which they could use to survive to the next vintage. No longer necessary for many of the Bordeaux producers (where EP might be considered more of a marketing tool, in some cases…), but I would imagine it’s suddenly looking attractive to Australian producers hit by fires, and everyone who is hit by COVID.

Not a bad thing by any means - it also is a (relatively) fair way of allocating things in short or short-ish supply.

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Yes. Increasingly it seems to be about getting an allocation from limited supply.
I assume from each EP offer TWS buys some itself that can be sold by the bottle in due course?

Not that I (yet) engage with EP offers, but it wouldn’t be in TWS interest to pair with very less than the best even if it is outside the expected regions?

Also - and without opening a gargantuan debate - do you think Bordeaux, etc will still have the same amount of sway it did? My gut tells me that the younger consumer, who are often more interested in a story, and origins and an experience, will influence the market more. Even at the higher end with wines for laying down.


I was a bit sniffy to start with about the ever expanding en primeur offerings, but I have become quite fond of them. And I like that I can get a bit of something for relatively little money. The Bin 5 thing for £87. It is sort of fun, or at least not actually irritating like ep Bordeaux is.

Now fully converted I have been buying from Burgundy, Rhone, Barolo, the Bin thing and I now never look at the Bordeaux offer at all. So I think it is not just younger drinkers, but older ones too leaving Bordeaux. So in that sense the Society has to follow, no doubt some of these offers will flunk.

The other thing I notice is that we seem to really care about these offers and get upset when we miss out. Stirring this kind of emotional response suggests a strong bond or need.


I’ve bought EP wines which have never subsequently appeared on the WS site.

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Definitely agree that it’s drinkers generally that are moving away from Bordeaux. It’s become too much of an investment vehicle for nearly anyone to really consider to be good value at most price points or even for drinking at most price points.

The rest of the world has caught up/over taken on quality and will also in most cases age the wine to drinking window for you rather than you having to take a risk.

(I still occasionally buy EP Bordeaux, I am what is known as a sucker).


Me too, a bit anyway. But I mainly buy it once it is physically available now. What I have found is that bordeaux has become less and less important in my drinking and in my ‘cellar’ as I have become less involved in the EP circus. Which is sort of a shame because at the cheaper end there are still some lovely wines and bargains.


Same here. Have been reading and enjoying the Bordeaux EP thread but don’t appear to have bought anything. My accounts dept remind me that we have a fresh fine wine list in July, white Burgundy 2019 EP in August, Brunello 2016 EP in Sept. Plus Produtorri around that time.
Would really like to have 2019 Grand Puy Lacoste but faced with such a series of great opportunities Bordeaux seems easiest to forego. Particularly as prices haven’t come down that much in many cases.


I have been reading too, but I have not replied as I find myself in stunned amazement at apparently sensible people being whipped up into thinking they must rush to buy fairly pedestrian wines at £50 a bottle because such bargains will not come again.

Is this a sure thing? I have been wanting this and will hang on for TWS of they do it regularly.


Yes, I need to know this. My streak of avariciousness has been screeching at me since I saw that case of @Embee’s.

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I believe there was discussion in the Sarah Knowles ask a buyer thread. Whether anything can be described as a sure thing this year…

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They might not say but I just emailed them an enquiry about this, I will report back if I hear from them.


The suggestion from Sarah was that it would be around September. Via email :grimacing:

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I’m unsure too. The 2011 case, bought in Aug 2016, was publicised in one of the Fine Wine Lists. IIRC TWS also offered the 2014 cru case but it wasn’t publicised in any offer. Some may have received an e-mail to bring it to their attention ( I didn’t surprisingly ) but by the time I was aware it was no longer available. I don’t recall the 2015 case being offered by TWS as yet, if it has been, it passed me by. Having said that, extrapolating from the 2011’s, there’s still a chance it might appear.

The only advise I can offer, should TWS have a stash, is that it will probably sell out within hours so have your trigger finger ready and don’t equivocate !



Are they Riservas? If so then a 5 year gap sounds about right. If we are relying on email, however, I don’t expect I’ll receive anything in time.

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Maybe they should launch them on Instagram instead :wink:


You trying to start a riot?!?

Actually I’m even worse on that. I don’t get much value from just surfing it, but tend to log in for specific reasons.