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Fine wine becoming a ‘regular luxury’ for British consumers

Published:  08 September, 2021

A recent survey commissioned by fine wine merchant Bordeaux Index suggests that the pandemic has led to a surge of interest in fine wine buying – either for immediate consumption or longer term investment.

The survey's findings, supported by BI internal data, revealed that almost three quarters (73%) of wine-loving Brits have spent more on fine wine since the start of the pandemic.

Almost a third of the survey's respondents (29%) stated that they now consider themselves a “wine connoisseur,” while almost half (46%) of those questioned said that buying fine wine started as a way to treat themselves to a little luxury in lockdown.

Furthermore, almost nine out of 10 (86%) respondents noted that they intend to make fine wine consumption a permanent lifestyle change, as life starts to return to normal.

Bordeaux Index’s first quarter results were similarly promising. They show that fine wine and spirits sales have increased by 44% YoY, valued at $82m. Notably, BI’s online fine wine trading platform, LiveTrade, has seen volumes rise by 52%.

According to Matthew O’Connell, head of investment at Bordeaux Index, the company has seen significant gains in the UK, where it recorded H1 customer growth of 13%. Many of these are new to the fine wine market, either as collectors or investors.

“The market over the past six months has been characterised by significantly increased demand and prices which are either meaningfully (5-10%+) higher or appear on the verge of rising. Bordeaux and Burgundy have led the charge,” said O'Connell.

“Today’s findings show that the pandemic has significantly changed our approach to the way we consume fine wine, and the increasing desire to aspire to drink better at home. We have seen this in our own UK business, and interestingly have observed broadly similar patterns across our Asian and US offices.”