Year's biggest wine auction nets $14.5m in Hong Kong
A weekend sale of rare French wine returned $14.5 million, making it the year's biggest wine auction and underlining Hong Kong's status as a leading wine market, the auction house said Monday.
The two-day auction by US house Acker Merrall & Condit featured the Don Stott Collection, considered a "reference library of great Burgundy", the organisers said.
With 98 percent of the lots sold, the intense interest in the premium French vintages demonstrated the strength of Chinese demand for high-end luxury goods despite the eurozone crisis and rising inflation at home.
"Highly competitive bidding was witnessed throughout this two-day landmark auction, which reflected the escalating demand and passion for fine Burgundy wines in the global market," Acker Merrall & Condit said in a statement.
The auctioneers said 145 world auction records were set, including 23 for Georges Roumier, 22 for Domaine Dujac, 17 for Domaine de la Romanee Conti and 13 for Louis Jadot.
The star lot from the Domaine de la Romanee Conti collection was a case of 1990 DRC La Tache which sold for a "staggering" HK$536,800 (US$68,821), they said. A case of 1985 La Tache fetched HK$390,400.
"Don Stott is the world's foremost collector of Burgundy, and his cellar is unchallenged for its great depth and diversity of Burgundy, even after this sale," Acker Merrall & Condit chief executive John Kapon said in the statement.
"The enthusiastic market response attests to the robust market in Asia for fine and rare wines."
He said it also showed Chinese buyers were diversifying their interests, which in the past have been heavily dominated by Bordeaux wines.
Six rare bottles of Roumier's 1978 Musigny sold for HK$463,600, just one of the records set over the weekend auction.
"We tasted two divine wines from Roumier on Saturday, the first being a stunningly gorgeous 1993 Les Amoureuses and the second being a mythical 1971 Bonnes Mares," Kapon said.
"I can still taste the wine a day later. It was hauntingly great, another 98 pointer and a true wine legend. There is nothing like a great, old wine."
© 2011 AFP