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Published:  23 July, 2008

The 2001 vintage may not be a classic according to Robert Parker, but it is a good vintage for claret lovers, according to The Wine Society's general manager, Ian Ronald. Ronald told Harpers: 2001 isn't a Parker vintage and it certainly hasn't been written up well, but it is not that black and white. It isn't an investment vintage, it isn't going to appreciate in value,' he added, but it is better than the majority of the vintages in the 1990s and it is good for claret lovers, people who just like drinking claret - as long as you choose carefully. * Millsima, the Bordeaux-based wine merchant, has released its first UK en primeur lots of the 2001 vintage. One of the five biggest buyers of Bordeaux en primeur, Millsima is offering 143 wines, 15% fewer than for the 2000 vintage. Managing director Patrick Bernard said: The majority of producers have "played the game" and priced the wines reasonably this year, but caution has been the key word. Things got very over-inflated last year and it's time to get our feet back on the ground.' Best buys include Lynch-Bages at 279, Beychevelle (183) and La Tour Martillac (126).