The July auction of Fine and Rare Wines and Spirits featured over 420 lots, with 89% of these sold and a total aggregate of £153,676 realised against a pre-sale low estimate of £143,745. Wines and spirits spanned three centuries and the auction was described by Mark Robertson, Head of Dreweatts’ Wine department, as 'a wine lover’s sale'.
A major casualty of changing British drinking habits in the last 30 years, it is now wonderful to see mature vintage Ports’ continued renaissance in the global fine wine market, with particular demand for the 1960s and 70s vintages. For example, lot 30, showing left, 1966 Graham’s Finest Reserve, (est. £240-360) sold for £633.
The auction included a number of fine red Burgundy wines.
It is often hard to express in a few words the romance, disparity and occasional frustration of Burgundy and why it commands such high prices. It is sometimes simpler to imagine the world’s love for the region and then convey it in figures, as it only makes up 3% of French vineyards and of that just 14% comprises 1er or Grand Cru vineyards.
A few highlights included:
Lot 100, 1998 Clos de la Roche, Grand Crus Vieilles Vignes, Domaine Ponsot, showing right, (est. £1,700-2,100) sold for £2,530.
Lot 106, 2003 Bonnes Mares, Grand Cru, Domaine G Roumier, showing below, (est. £500-800) sold for £1,093.
Red Burgundy from 2008 also performed extremely well: although no ugly duckling, the 2008 vintage was known for its inconsistency when first released, however, over time the wines have proven to be of great purity and elegance.
Lot 125, Clos de La Roche, Grand Cru, Domaine Dujac (est.£1,800-2,200) sold for £2,013; lot 126, 2008 Gevrey Chambertin, 1er Cru Clos St Jacques, Domaine Rousseau (est. £2,200-3,200) sold for £2,760 and lot 127, 2008 Gevrey Chambertin, ‘Aux Echezeaux’, Vielles Vignes, Domaine Fourrier (est. £330-430) sold for £403.
Over 80 of the wines in the July sale came from Bordeaux. From a merchant background, I always applaud and encourage drinkers to explore smaller less known wine regions, but, I have recently found myself not practising what I preach and reaching for Bordeaux more and more.
Prices and demand for Cru Classe wines have remained steady and buoyant in recent years with thankfully no great peaks and troughs of the past that can unsettle the market. With high en primeur release prices, buyers have been less inclined to lay the wine down, and instead look towards mature stocks.
Rounding off the sale, from the south coast of the Crimea, lot 394, 1911 Massandra Tokay, (est, £500-900) sold for £1,093. Hailing from the first shipment of Massandra wines to the West in 1991, this particular bottle would have been present at some of the 20th century’s most historic moments: from the Russian Revolution, evacuation to Georgia during much of the war and finally at the Yalta conference, a Dreweatts’ auction is a noble retirement for such a noble bottle.
With competitive commission rates, a global sales platform, bonded facilities, national and international collection and delivery, Dreweatts’ Wine department offers a comprehensive, world class service. Our strict commitment to provenace is the cornerstone of what we do.
We offer collectors the opportunity to sell or acquire either rare single bottles, individual cases or whole collections.
All wines offered for sale are stored under temperature controlled conditions in specialist warehousing.
If you would like a full portfolio valuation, a cellar visit or independent advice on your wines, please do not hesitate to contact the Wine department directly.
AWRS reference number: XJAW00000110957
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