Twelve bottles of Screaming Eagle from California’s Napa Valley spanning all the vintages produced between 1992 and 2004 sold for $32,110, taking top slot at an Acker Merrall & Condit sale in New York.
Top Burgundy lots included 12 bottles of Vogue Musigny Vieilles Vignes 1971, which sold for $29,640, and four bottles of La Tache 1971 Domaine de la Romanee Conti, which fetched $24,700. Six magnums of Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1982 from Bordeaux sold for $20,995.
The auction came amid signs some appetite for top Bordeaux is reviving after a price drop between 2011 and 2014. Burgundy has frequently led auctions in the past couple of years, and rarer Californian wines as well as those from northern Italy and the Rhone are featuring more frequently among top bids.
“Screaming Eagle consistently gets the highest prices of the California cabernets,” Acker Chief Executive Officer John Kapon said in a phone interview following the April 25 auction. “1992 has become very scarce.”
Six bottles of Vosne Romanee Les Brulees 1980 from Burgundy producer Henri Jayer fetched $18,525, as did 12 bottles of Chateau La Mission Haut Brion 1989 from Pessac-Leognan, on the fringe of the city of Bordeaux itself.
“People are still willing to pay big prices for some of the top Bordeaux,” Kapon said. “It just has to have some age on it.”
Chinese buyers were back at this sale, after a lull following Chinese New Year celebrations in February, accounting for almost 20 percent of sales by value.
Elsewhere in the auction top Italian lots included four magnums of B. Giacosa Barolo Falletto di Serralunga Riserva, which sold for $8,028, and a single magnum of G. Conterno Barolo Monfortino Riserva, which fetched $5,187.
“We saw a lot of strength in California, in Italy, in the Rhone and even in Bordeaux, in the second growths,” Kapon said. Estates such as Chateau Calon Segur, Chateau Beychevelle, Chateau Leoville Las Cases and Chateau Pavie sold well.
Acker has wine sales next month scheduled for New York on May 21 and Hong Kong on May 30.