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What To Drink Now: Napa Valley Wine Futures

Dana Estates Rutherford Vineyard in Napa Valley
Dana Estates Rutherford Vineyard in Napa Valley

If there is one thing I have learned in my years of living in Dallas is that we love a good bottle of Napa Valley wine…especially those special, highly sought after “cult wines” that are usually only available via wait list and special allocation, often meaning you have to wait years to finally have the opportunity procure a special bottle, that you may often still have to wait years to receive….and, for collectors, wait even longer to open.

The company E-Cep hopes to change that a bit by bringing futures sales on highly sought after, luxury Napa Valley wine to customers via an e-commerce platform featuring ultra-premium, boutique wineries such as Dana Estates, Brand, Scarecrow, Kapscandy, Staglin and Vine Hill Ranch.

Buying wine futures is not a new concept, select Bordeaux futures are often some of the most prized luxury items purchased around the world, often passed down through generations. However E-Cep, a New York based company started in 2012 by Sally Wilkinson and Serge Marquie, bring futures buying to American wine by curating small-production Napa Valley wine allocations, selling set priced wine bonds to collectors through the company’s website, then those buyers exchange the bonds for a fixed number of bottles when the wine is bottled and released to the marketplace, typically one to two years later.  Yes, you do have to wait a bit to actually hold your investment, as with any wine futures program, but this site has given collectors the ability to purchase select vintages of special wines without necessarily being a part of the winery allocation list.

September 12 the company will release their next bond offering from small production wineries such as Corra Estate, crafted by Celia Welch (consultant for Scarecrow); Favia, the brand started by Andy Erickson (Harlan Estates and Screaming Eagle) and his wife, Annie Favia;  Vine Hill Ranch, from former Araujo winemaker Françoise Pechon, and more. Registration for E-Cep available here.