Tim’s been part of the Buying team since 2012. As well as buying Bordeaux, he also buys Beaujolais and Sherry (sounds like a dream job!) so you’re welcome to ask questions about those regions too. You can find out a little bit more about Tim here.
How to take part
Send us your questions by replying to this topic. Tim will then join us live for an hour from 1pm on Wednesday 3rd July and answer the advance questions we’ve already received, plus as many follow-up/‘live’ questions as possible.
How hard is it to judge something from the barrel to see how it will be in bottle in 5, 10, 15 years +?
Are we planning to offer more mid-priced (£15-20) Cru Bourgeois wines as a standard offering week in, week out? It seems quite often we have wines in the budget bracket and premium and not so much inbetween. I feel that’s a great level to show some of the techniques and attention that gives that distinctive, quality taste but is also affordable.
Also, I love Beaujolais Cru as it offers tremendous fine wine value - What are your plans to look at top quality bottles from there (£20+). I tried the 2009 Moulin a vent @~£21 you stocked recently and thought why on earth do people bother with Burgundy?!
I fell in love with Sherry after being offered some Palo Cortado at a friend’s house in Spain a few years back. Before that I had the usual image of Sherry/Grandma/Xmas to put me off. Those of us who love it can’t believe that such a complex wine, with oodles of flavour and finesse - not to mention food friendliness- is still so cheap.
In your opinion - will Sherry always be the wine enthusiast’s passion, or do you see a time in which more people learn to appreciate its versatility?
I wonder if you could give us a little insight as to what is going on currently with Bordeaux pricing. I’ve just been looking at EP prices over '16, '17 and '18 and some mid priced ones are going up crazy amounts (Angludet, Chasse-Spleen, Puy-Blanquet) whilst other, comparable ones are hardly changing or even occasionally falling (Grand Corbin-Despagne, Cantemerle, d’Aiguilhe).
Is it just supply and demand? Or are they pricing up an ‘exceptional’ vintage? I’ve only looked at the ones I tend to buy and maybe I’m just unlucky that some of my favourites have become trendy?
I’m a real fan of well made white Bordeaux, but there never really seems to be an abundance of it on the list, there are probably around 3 at the moment that are in the “decent” camp price wise and taste profile wise. What are the plans to increase the percentage of white Bordeaux on the list if any as its pretty disappointing at the moment.
I’ve already placed my order.
I was concerned by the high alcohol levels and the drinking windows on some meaning that I’ll probably be dead!
I went for
Ch Langoa Barton St Julien
Ch Capbern Saint Estephe
As you are co-creator of the second best selling society wine - The Society Claret is there ever scope for you to have a bit of fun and create a “more funky” version? Maybe playing around more with the blend? Certainly it would be nice to have a funky blend with perhaps a bit of aging potential to it! Perhaps “The Society Alternative Claret” with a bit of premium price tag as a bit of trial! Maybe even be very bold and release it as a EP exclusive!
I don’t think so. It’s not like the pre-order ep offer where the prices were only an idea of what they might be. This and other EP offers when they go public are only done so after the producers have fixed their EP prices. And I don’t believe they then will change. I have previously ordered EP from the remnants after the close of the original offer and they’re still sold at the same price.
There are very substantial volumes of Bordeaux back vintages available for sale on the UK secondary market, particularly at cru bourgeois and lower cru classé levels. Do you think this stock is getting sold, and more importantly drunk, sufficiently quickly for the demand for new vintages to be sustained?
On a related question, are there, as was rumoured, large allocations of 2017 still unsold that UK merchants are committed to take delivery of - and is TWS affected?
Talk on other blogs is that the Society have invested heavily in Chateau Beaumont for it own wines. Is that correct?
Separately, reports suggest that a larger number of chateau are retaining stock rather than offering it en premier to both maintain EP prices and benefit from higher prices (possibly) in the future. Does this apply to some of the smaller, less expensive chateau as well or do they need the cash flow?
There are only 3 dry whites offered EP from 2018. are there no quantities? Is there a lack of quality? Can we expect some of the wines offered not EP at a later date? Which is the best white Bordeaux vintage in your opinion from the last 5 (ever)?