On barrels

The difference between french-style oak and Piedmont-style oak … 225 litres versus 10,600 litres. The former are usually new every year, the latter are 50 years old in this case. Both are used to make Barolo.

That’s not a barrel:


This is a barrel:


By the by, for French oak, the trees have to be around 150 years old. That was the legal minimum until a few years ago, when the age was lowered slightly, sometimes to around 120 or 130 years old. And for one majestic 150 year old oak tree, you will be lucky to get three oak barrels – more usually two. Of course the off-cuts go into making furniture and other wood products, but that still means a lot of tree for a little barrel.

Bordeaux 2009 – Do the Chinese really buy En Primeur?

Or do the chinese not use google, chinese wine buyers not use google or does google search insights not include data from china (did that whole routing via Hong Kong thing really mess things up or what?)?


And what’s with these Moroccan wine lovers?


And who were all the prescient folks in early 2008 looking up 2009 wine futures already?

Bordeaux 2010 is already getting traffic too – France at 100, Morocco at 16, Belgium at 5 … maybe all the Chinese buyers route through Moroccan proxies?

By contrast with Bordeaux, if I look at Burgundy and then narrow to Food and Drink, the Chinese top the list (at least the HK Chinese do):


Maybe the smart money should be buying Burgundy now ahead of what looks like another good vintage in Bordeaux?