“En primeur” is one of many terms the wine world has inherited from French, referring to buying wine as ”futures”. Find out everything you need to know about what it is and how it works below.
What does “en primeur” mean?
Wines sold “en primeur” are essentially “wine futures” – young wine that is sold while still maturing in barrel. The wine is sold in full, unmixed cases, In Bond (ie ex duty and VAT), and shipped once bottled (normally two to three years after the vintage).
Why should I buy en primeur?
Buying en primeur can be the best way to secure an allocation of wine made in tiny volumes, while wine often also goes up in value once bottled and as it reaches maturity.
What does the price include?
The en primeur price for a wine includes shipping to our bonded warehouse in London, but excludes duty, VAT and delivery to your home or another address. You’ll need to pay storage charges for any wine kept in our bonded warehouse.
Can I buy different formats en primeur?
Yes – one of the advantages of buying en primeur is that you can secure half-bottles or large formats of wine. In Bordeaux, different formats come with a small premium: £5 per case for 3 x 150cl magnums, £10 per case or 12 x 37.5cl half-bottles, £30 per 300cl double-magnum and £40 per 600cl imperial.
Which wine regions sell their wines en primeur?
The finest producers in Bordeaux, Burgundy and the Rhône all offer wine en primeur, although top wineries around the world now follow this model too.
When do I buy wine en primeur?
Bordeaux is offered in the spring following the vintage, while Burgundy producers wait until a year or more after the vintage (with the wine offered between September and March). In the Rhône, the wine tends to be offered just over a year after the vintage.
Where can I buy wine en primeur?
These fine wines won’t be available on the shelves of high street retailers. Fine wine merchants, however, will offer these wines – with the most desirable wines offered on allocation only. FINE+RARE has established relationships with many of the wine world’s most prestigious estates, enabling us to secure stock of the most desirable wines.
How do I know that I will like the taste of the wine I have bought?
Some buyers follow the same property year after year, while others follow a critic or take advice from their wine merchant. With each release we will publish tasting notes (both critics’ and our own, where we have tasted the wine), and our expert Account Managers are always on hand to offer advice.
Futures? How long do I have to wait until my wine is delivered?
It varies according to the property, but wine purchased en primeur is normally delivered between two and three years after the vintage. The wine will be delivered to our bonded warehouse in London once ready. You can then store the wine until it's ready to drink, sell it or withdraw it for storage elsewhere, or – eventually – consumption.
Can I drink the wine as soon as it's delivered?
There’s nothing stopping you, but most wine sold en primeur will be best with time in the cellar. It will, however, depend on the wine in question; our team will be happy to advise you on when is the best time to drink the wines in your portfolio.
Where should I store my wine?
Proper storage is essential for ageing wine, ensuring that when you do pull the cork on a bottle it is in the best-possible condition. It’s also important, if you might choose to sell your wine further down the line, that a wine’s provenance can be guaranteed, and this is best done by storing wine professionally In Bond. You can store your wine in our secure, bonded, climate-controlled warehouse for a small annual fee, where it will also be insured at replacement value.
I bought two cases but I’ve decided that I don’t want them both. What can I do?
No problem. You can resell your wine through F+R . If you want advice, simply get in touch with your Account Manager who will be happy to help.
What if I’d like to know more?
Get in touch: we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have.
Why choose FINE+RARE?
Our expert Buyers and Account Managers have years of experience tasting, securing and selling the world’s finest wine, giving you unparalleled access to the most sought-after producers, with service tailored to your personal needs.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? We’d be delighted to help.