Do you consider yourself a veteran collector? Or a newbie in the fine wine game? Whatever your level of expertise, our Head of Private Cellar Management, Sophie Luff, shares her tips for building a wine portfolio…
SEEK UNBIASED ADVICE
At F+R we pride ourselves on the fact that we are able to source the finest wines and vintages from all over the world. We accomplish this by working with a broad network of negociants and merchants, rather than a small list of individual wineries who might influence our decisions on which wines to recommend. I would always advise customers looking to make purchases to ensure that you are armed with all the tools you need to draw your own conclusions – we’ll offer trusted wine critic reviews and up-to-date market prices. Choosing a reputable merchant is key to ensuring your wine is delivered to you as ordered and your en primeur wines are fulfilled!
KNOW EXACTLY WHAT YOU ARE BUYING
Provenance has never been more important than it is today. We only work with other reputable merchants, and we want to ensure that the bottles delivered to you have been condition checked on arrival to our storage chambers. You should always be encouraged to ask about the background of the bottles, in particular for those that have been stored privately.
STORE YOUR WINE PROPERLY
Fine wine requires not only patience, but a cool, dark, stable and humid environment in which to mature. The best place to keep them is in a bonded warehouse that meets global wine storage requirements. This will not only protect you from the temptation to open your wine before it hits its peak, but will also help maintain the value of your investment should you choose to sell it later. Our chamber at London City Bond is HKQAA compliant and the ideal location to both store your wines, and of course sell them on from if you should decide to.
BUY WHAT YOU LOVE
Although it is possible to make considerable amounts of money investing in wine, returns can’t be guaranteed. Trends and movements in the marketplace mean that the only fool-proof way of safeguarding yourself from disappointment is to buy wines that you will enjoy drinking should the worst happen. This will also maintain your passion and increase your enjoyment as you learn more.
NEVER STOP EXPLORING
Fine wine sometimes has a reputation for being stuffy and old-fashioned; things that stand the test of time often do. Although there will always be a market for legends like Château Lafite Rothschild, Domaine de la Romanée-Conti and Penfolds, variety is the spice of life so keep an eye out for the under-the-radar or up-and-coming wineries like Belle-Brise, Leroy and Cloudburst. The fine wine game is full of unexpected delights; my recommendation is Le Desir by Verite in California, a beautiful nod to the traditional Cabernet Franc based wines of the Bordeaux right bank.