Record fine wine auction sales in the 1H 2019 points to an upbeat market this Autumn

Strong sales figures published by the world’s leading auction houses for 1H 2019 indicate a healthy fine wine market with robust expectations for the key Autumn sales period ahead.

Sotheby’s reported record sales of £52million for their ‘live’ fine wine auctions during the first half of 2019, an increase of 23 per cent for the same period in 2018. Zachys achieved ‘live’ auction sales of US$62.8M, topped up to US$ 68M with online trades. Headline-grabbing sales of single-owner collections and the unquestionable provenance of ex-chateau releases have added appeal and returns to owners with large formats also in demand.

Burgundy continued as the leading regional performer; Zachys’ top performer for the period was a six magnum lot of DRC La Tache 1990 which raised US$191,226 and Christies reported a six magnum cache of Armand Rousseau Chambertin 1996 which sold for £49,000, far exceeding its pre-sale estimate of £30,000.

First growth Bordeaux delivered strong returns, especially in larger formats and rare vintage Champagne also enjoyed the limelight, Christies noted that one of its outstanding transactions in the first half of the year was the sale of six magnums of Philipponnat’s Clos des Goisses 1951, sold in London for £36,750 in June.

Press coverage of unique collections still get global attention and Sotheby’s sale of a collection entitled ‘Tran-scend-ent’ was outstanding for the shere scale of the sale. A collection of thousands of bottles of mature vintage wines from the world’s top producers owned by one individual (un-named) made auction history in a 4 day series which exceeded its high pre-sale estimate of HK$206M to raise HK$233.6M. The collection included 250 lots of DRC, 600 lots of Domaine Coche-Dury, 350 lots of Dom Perignon and 140 lots of Rhone’s Guigal. Three (12 x 75cl) lots of DRC Romanee Conti 1990 were the top sellers at HK$2.7M each and three (12 x 75cl) Mouton Rothschild 1945 raised nearly HK$2M.

Another Sotheby’s auction this year raised funds from the collaboration between Mouton Rothschild and the Palace of Versailles. Seventy five exclusive cases holding one each of the 2005, 2009, 2010, 2013 and 2007 vintages were auctioned at three events in the Spring. As usual with Mouton Rothschild the vintage labels are created by renowned artists and each of these; Giuseppe Penone (2005), Bernar Venet (2007), Anish Kapoor (2009), Jeff Koons (2010) and Lee Ufan (2013), have also had artworks displayed at Versailles. The proceeds of the sale were originally intended to be contributed fully to the refurbishment of Versailles but following the dreadful fire at Notre Dames later in the summer some of these funds were diverted to that project.

Despite ongoing concerns about the global economy and political uncertainty the fine wine market continues to hold steady and can offer wealth protection as a stable asset. For more information contact us now on 0203 384 2262.