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Everything you need to know about the En Primeur process

What is En Primeur?

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 market.

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.

Which wines are sold En Primeur?

The most popular En Primeur wines are from the historic wine regions of Bordeaux, but this has now been adopted in Burgundy, the Rhône Valley and Northern Italy.

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. These are tasted and assessed by international critics and members of the wine trade both in Bordeaux and recently abroad due to the pandemic. 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.

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.

Wines are purchased at “In Bond” price, so they are exclusive of Duty and VAT and then 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.

Why buy En Primeur?

If you’re looking to build a collection of fine wine, En Primeur is a good place to start. The release price is typically the lowest price that the wine will ever be and will be considerably cheaper than the future price of the wine on the open market. Purchasing En Primeur also guarantees the perfect provenance of the wine as it has been kept in one place. It can also be your only opportunity to secure wines made in very small quantities, as these rarely make their way to the secondary market.

You can choose wine for future consumption, for investment or enjoy the best of both. We have a knowledgeable team who will be able to recommend what to buy for your budget and preferences.

Our En Primeur wines offered In Bond (i.e. all shipping and bottling charges are included). The bottled wines are shipped up to two years after purchase. On arrival, wine can be delivered directly to you or stored Under Bond on your behalf at our safe and secure warehouse, London City Bond. You won’t pay any storage charges with us until your wines arrive in our Bonded warehouse.

En Primeur wines from Bordeaux usually have a set closing date for orders, which will always be included in our offers to you. We’ll indicate an anticipated date of when we expect the vintage to be bottled and shipped to the UK, but this will vary from producer to producer, so we cannot guarantee an exact date. Once shipped we will notify you by email.

Cru Wine Ltd.

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