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Buying wines En Primeur

Your Guide to Purchasing En Primeur

Interested in purchasing wines En Primeur, but not sure where to start? Our handy guide will take you through the history of buying En Primeur, what it means and the many benefits it can bring to a fine wine collector or investor. 

With our many years of experience and expertise in buying and selling Bordeaux at Cru Wine, we can cut through the noise and simplify the En-Primeur purchasing process, helping you make the right decisions on which wines to buy, whether that be for future drinking or investment.

What does buying En Primeur mean?

Buying wine “En Primeur” or “wine futures” refers to the process of buying wine whilst it is still in the barrel, before it is bottled and released to the general market.

This system dates back to the 18th century when Bordeaux négociants used to visit the local châteaux before harvest to buy grapes off the vine. En Primeur has become increasingly popular in other wine regions, especially Burgundy and Rhone.

The benefit of purchasing wines En Primeur means you can buy at a price exclusive of Duty and VAT, which you won’t have to pay until you withdraw them from storage. The wines are usually shipped from the producers anywhere between eight months to several years after the vintage, depending on the region and the ageing requirements.

Image courtesy of Chateau Angelus

How does En Primeur work in Bordeaux?

Every spring after the vintage, the cru classé properties of Bordeaux produce young barrels from the previous year’s harvest. Each spring, international critics and members of the wine trade arrive in Bordeaux to taste and assess these wines whilst they are still in barrel. The châteaux then release for sale a large proportion of their production at an opening price. This is sold in strict allocations to wine brokers in Bordeaux, known as négociants and in turn to wine merchants.

After our team taste and assess the wines from barrel and we’ve received our allocation of wines, we release these wines for sale, and you’ll have a chance to make your purchase. Wines are sold In Bond (before Duty and VAT have been paid) and by the case.

Once the wines are ready, they are bottled and shipped to our warehouse. These cases are usually shipped 2-3 years after the vintage has matured and been bottled.

We will let you know when your wines arrive in the UK, giving you the option to withdraw them and be delivered to you to store them, or to keep them in safe and secure storage with us at our partner warehouse. When wines are delivered, you’ll need to pay Duty and VAT.

The Benefits of Buying En Primeur with Cru Wine

 Best Value

The release price of a particular vintage is often the lowest it will ever be, and will be considerably cheaper than its future price on the open market.

Guaranteed Provenance

Acquiring your wine En Primeur guarantees that it will be optimally stored ahead of bottling, with all wine being delivered directly from the supplier either to your home or to our secure bonded warehouse. 


Exclusive Access

A limited amount of these wines are produced each vintage and in some cases, there will be wines that will never make their way onto the secondary market. This means that purchasing these wines during En Primeur is your only opportunity to access some of the most sought after wines on the market.

Safe Hands

Our specialist team are always on hand to ensure you have the best En Primeur experience. With over 30+ years of wine expertise combined, an unwavering passion for wine is at the heart of what we do. Whether you are purchasing for consumption or investment we will be able to safely guide you through the most suitable options to suit your budget and preferences.


Marking Milestones

Acquiring a particular vintage may not just hold financial or critical value but is also the perfect way to commemorate an important occasion or anniversary. Purchasing wine En Primeur is a touching tribute to a special year and is the perfect gift for any wine lover.



Cru Wine Ltd.

Registered company 08579498. Cru Wine Limited, 109 Hammersmith Road, London, United Kingdom, W14 0QH. VAT Number: GB180547111. All rights reserved.