This morning Vieux Chateau Certan (VCC) has released, which aside from Cheval Blanc which we expect today, is the last major release. Vieux Chateau Certan is one of the wines of the vintage, an utterly superb offering, which has been awarded 96-98 from the Wine Advocate, Lisa Perotti-Brown says VCC, ‘gives up gorgeous black raspberries, crushed black currants and warm black berries on the nose with chocolate-covered cherries, violets and star anise suggestions plus black truffles and wood smoke.’  It has also been awarded 97-98 from James Suckling, who calls it Complete. Harmonious.’

Today’s release price is £1,032 per case of six. This reflects a 10% discount to the release price of the 2016 and 13% to the current trading price. The price also reflects a 24% discount to the current trading price of the 2015. This is instructive that the 2017 could reach 98 points, the same as the 2015 and is very likely to outscore the 2016. VCC 2017 is one of the finest ever, surpassing the 2005 and close behind the 2009 and 2010, to which is trades at a 23% discount. VCC is highly allocated on release and hard to source with proper age. Its stock in growing every year as is its price tag, the average price across the last 15 vintages increased 50% over the last four years. In 2017 less than 4,500 cases were made. VCC 2017 is a beautiful wine, with brilliant ageing potential and a towering example of a superb Pomerol offering excellent value against the other powerhouse Estates on this small yet brilliant plateau.

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Vieux Chateau Certan (VCC) is the world leading Pomerol wine that many believe is comparable in quality to Chateau Petrus, which it neighbours. VCC is one of the oldest Bordeaux estates in Pomerol, dating back to the 1700s, whence its  history began with Jean Demay de Certan. Through its formative years it was considered the finest of the Pomerol appellation. It is easy to understand why, the peak of its vineyards are sited at the epicentre of the Pomerol plateau. It boasts one of the largest single blocks on the Pomerol Plateau and is surrounded by Chateau Lafleur, which is next door, with Petrus and L’Evangile as neighbours, it also has vines planted next to Le Pin. In fact, its vines are found at the centre of the top of the Pomerol Plateau and they share this position with Petrus, on the blue clay dominant soils.

In the last few decades under the direction of Alexandre Thienpont, whose first vintage was the 1986 vintage, its famous pink capsule has once again taken centre stage, viewed as one of the finest wines in the world, it surely is. It is a romantic notion that the pink capsule came about due to Georges Thienpont, who bought the Estate in 1924. He wanted to know which of his clients were buying VCC and thus the pink label, which happened to be the en vouge colour in Paris at the time, stood out in cellars, letting him spot his wine. The family are also well known for Chateau Le Pin, which Jacques Thienpont purchased in 1979. Today VCC consists of 14 hectares, planted with 60% Merlot, 30% Cabernet Franc and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon. The wine undergoes 18-22 months in new French oak. The second wine is called Gravette de Certan.

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