The influential US critic gave 18 wines scores of 98-100 in his verdict and suggested that it “may turn out to be the finest vintage I have tasted in 32 years of covering Bordeaux”.
But there are warnings that the high ratings and expected resulting top-end prices – and a general wine media frenzy over the quality of the 2009 vintage – could lead to opportunist crooks attempting to dupe gullible enthusiasts over wines they can’t supply.
Simon Staples, Berry Bros & Rudd’s sales director, said: “High prices only encourage more skulduggery. We have already heard horror stories of people selling 2009 Lafite. People’s desire to buy 2009 might cause judgement errors. More than 50 companies have set up this year and are selling wine fraudulently or in excess of market price.”?The Wine & Spirit Trade Association urged consumers to carefully scrutinise companies offering wine as an investment, including checking the size and reputation of the merchant, asking for guarantees and insurance, and ensuring
they get paperwork establishing entitlement to any wines paid for.
Chief executive Jeremy Beadles said: “Bona fide merchants won’t have any problem proving their credentials. Consumers who ask the right questions will ensure they’re not caught out.”