Meet Mark Robertson, Head of Dreweatts Wine Department. Here we get to know him a little better, asking him some questions and finding out how he came to be in the wine business and what his advice would be to wine collectors.
1. What was the first bottle of wine you bought or owned?
Strangely, I can actually remember this...it was a bottle of L’Ermitage de Chasse Spleen from a shop in Bristol. A very forgettable wine in terms of quality, but I remember it and I have always had a soft spot for this wonderful little Chateau since. Recently I had a 2009 Chateau Chasse Spleen, which everyone should own....it is sensational. Buy if you can.
2. Is this what you always wanted to do, what you imagined you’d be doing when you were ‘grown up?’
I thought about going into the Foreign Office. My school careers office told me I should go into banking, which suggests that they had taken a wrong turn with their own career choice.
3. How did you come to be in this business?
I started at Justerini & Brooks. A great, historic firm that taught me invaluable knowledge of how to do things and also, just importantly, how not to do things. It gave me many incredible opportunities and experiences all over the world and nourished my love of wine.
4. What is your favourite part of your job?
Making clients happy
5. What is the most common mistake you see people make when buying or storing their wine?
That all wine gets better with age. With white wine always err on the side of caution and drink it younger.... even the best ones.
6. What is your favourite inanimate possession – wine or otherwise and why?
My grandfather’s corkscrew. He was one of the first Masters of Wine. It is beautifully made and pulls any cork with such elegance. I have never seen one like it.
When my mother died, it was the only thing I would have fought my brother over.
7. With constant access to an array of wine, which do you always find hard to resist?
A large glass of Chilled Chablis.
8. If starting to collect in a new area now, which area would you be most interested in exploring?
I think the dry reds of Portugal are the wines to watch. It has a great tradition in wine making and many indigenous grape varieties to play around with.
9. What is the best story, ‘find’, or auction result you have had or been witness to, during your career so far?
Selling 20 cases of 2002 Mouton Rothschild en Primeur to a 95 year old for his own consumption... even after I told him it would be starting to drink in 15 years. It doubled in price within a year, so he was astute as well as having impeccable taste and optimism.
10. What wine or spirit would you love someone to bring you?
1992 Corton Charlemagne, Bonneau du Martray - straight from the Domaine.
At the forefront of the rapidly evolving fine wine trade, Mark has bought and sold some of the most important private and corporate wine collections in the United Kingdom, Middle East and Asia and brings extensive experience and knowledge across all wine and spirit regions.
Dreweatts holds traditional live auctions, as well as online bidding on two platforms, and offer collectors the opportunity to sell or acquire rare single bottles, individual cases or whole collections.
Our specialists can provide valuations on single bottles & entire cellars, as well as advice on starting & maintaining your cellar. Please contact us to discuss an appointment. Alternatively, you can upload images and request a valuation via our online form.
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