Sotheby’s first auction of the year, held last week in London, brought in a total of £570,674 and was dominated by the Bordeaux legends and classic white Burgundys.
“We kicked off the New Year with top prices for Bordeaux, and strong results for other regions, especially grand cru white Burgundy and the Rhone” said Stephen Mould, head of Sotheby’s Wine Europe, in an email statement.
Asian bidders buy Petrus, Lafite, Latour & Mouton Rothschild
Petrus 82’ was the shining star of the sale, with 6 bottles of the Pomerol vintage going to an Asian bidder for a total of £12,338 – just short of the upper estimate of £15,000 for the lot.
Ten bottles of Latour 82’ sold for £10,340 and six of Mouton Rothschild 2000 brought in £5,405. As for Lafite, a case of the 1996 vintage fetched £6,463 while 12 bottles of 1998 fetched £4,700 and 6 bottles of the 2000 sold for £5,170.
Burgundy leads with Coche-Dury, Comtes-Lafon and Leflaive
Delicious white Burgundy also sparked much interest, with 4 bottles of Chevalier Montrachet 1999 Leflaive going for for £1,293, two bottles of Corton Charlemagne 2000 Coche-Dury selling for £2,233 and a 12-bottle mixed lot of 2004 Comtes-Lafon changing hands for £1,410.
Signs of fine wine market recovery
The success of Sotheby’s sale is no doubt music to the ears of the Bordelais, who have suffered 40% price plunges of many Bordeaux First Growths over the last few years.
Last year was the first time in five years that the Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index closed in neutral territory, falling just 0.7% over 2015 and competing hard with rising demand for wine from other regions, including Burgundy, Italy and California.
This month, however, things seem to be looking up – the Fine Wine 50 closed January on a high, up 1.6% since the start of the month and following on from a 1.2% gain in December.
This cancelled out the declines seen in October and November, and pushed the region’s total market share by value up to 83.9% – well above the 2015 average.
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