After the recent articles highlighting the massive shopping spree the Chinese are on, locking in raw material resources around the world while the US is not in a position to buy due to the American recession, here's a different resource that they are also scooping up. The 2009 vintage of Bordeaux wines is thought to rank with the top vintages of the last half-century, 1959, 1961, 1982, 2000 and 2005. In fact Steven Spurrier, one of Britain's leading critics dubbed it "the best Bordeaux had ever produced", while Michel Bettane, France's leading critic, said: "It is the best in my lifetime."
In 1999 Forbes published its first list of China's wealthiest and to be among the 50 richest one had to be worth $6 million. Now, ten years later,
to be among the 50 richest, one has to be worth $1.6 billion. With this staggering change has come a mushrooming business in luxury items, but especially of certain iconic brands and the wine is seen the same way
"Everyone in China is thinking Lafite," he said. "It is seen in the same light as Louis Vuitton, Prada and Gucci."
So the Chinese are descending on Bordeaux in droves and buying as much as they can.
"Sam Yip, 36, a Hong Kong investor tasting at Chateau Mouton Rothschild, which along with Lafite-Rothschild has been dubbed by one merchant the "tipple of choice for your thrusting Chinese industrialist", said he was planning to spend $250,000 (£163,000) across the 2009 vintage for his private collection."
"Money doesn't seem to be an issue," said Gabriel Wong, who sells Bordeaux across southern China. "Private companies are growing fast and property values are soaring so people have a lot of cash. This week 70 bottles of Petrus sold for £210,000 so there is no limit to the appetite for the top growths."Her firm is planning to buy 3,000 cases — three times more than last year.
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