The 2022 Burgundy vintage continues two themes: first, the rising influence of William Kelley (The Wine Advocate) as a leading wine critic in the post-Robert Parker, social media driven digitised era; and second, his specific expertise in Burgundy and Champagne, two regions where Parker himself had limited influence. Kelley, along with Neal Martin, now provides the critical reference points that Burgundy and Champagne markets have lacked for many years.
In this analysis, we focus on Kelley's insights into Burgundy, which drive pricing and attention, and have revealed emerging stars. We have analysed over 900 tasting notes from 78 producers for the 2022 vintage to identify any emerging trends in this campaign.
Global warming increasingly affects modern Burgundy, casting a spotlight on the less famous appellations. These areas, cooler 20 years ago, traditionally produced wines with less natural ripeness and concentration. However, with the climate shifting, consumers, negociants, and winemakers are paying more attention to these regions. Kelley's 2022 scores reflect this ongoing trend.
In 2022, weather conditions enabled Côte de Beaune producers to create outstanding wines, setting a benchmark for some winemakers.
The table below shows scores by appellation (excluding grand crus), with the red-highlighted appellations predominantly featuring red wines.
The table below shows the scores by appellation (excluding grand crus). Those highlighted in red, are those where the scores were predominantly, if not entirely for reds.
For this analysis, we are using the mid-point of the en primeur score. i.e. (94-96) = 95 points
The first thing to notice here is the clear homogeny from the 2022 vintage. The fact that almost all appellations have scored very highly and very consistently, is a hallmark of the vintage. Jasper Morris MW advises that this is a year to buy broadly, as quality is present across the spectrum.
A notable trend is the diminishing gap in quality (scores) between the Côte de Nuits appellations and the Côte de Beaune. Historically viewed as inferior, Volnay, Pommard, and Beaune now compete at the top-quality levels, comparable to Nuits St Georges, Vosne Romanee, and Gevrey Chambertin.
Analysing premier cru and village wines from 2000 to 2020, we find that wines from Volnay, Beaune, and Pommard trade on average at a 30-60% discount to their counterparts in Gevrey Chambertin (which received similar scores this vintage). This price gap presents a significant opportunity for investors, especially in a high-quality vintage like 2022.
Appellation Price Comparison
Appellation Price Comparison Data Table
Clearly there is an opportunity for both consumers and investors to take advantage of this price discrepancy, especially in a vintage like 2022, where the quality in these appellations is so high and as detailed above in many instances on par with the quality found in the much more expensive Côte de Nuits appellations.
As quality in these appellations increases, global attention will likely follow, potentially raising demand and market depth for these wines over the medium term. Investors should consider a mid-to-long-term horizon, as liquidity in the secondary market may not be immediate despite the appealing quality-price ratio.