Burgundy Drives Acker Merrall Auctions as DRC, Jayer Lead

Chateau Petrus Vineyard
Chateau Petrus, a wine estate in Bordeaux's Pomerol region, produces some of its most expensive wines. Its vineyards are predominantly planted with merlot grapes. Photographer: Guy Collins/Bloomberg

Burgundy accounted for more than 45 percent of sales at Acker Merrall & Condit auctions so far this year, ahead of Bordeaux on just under 30 percent, as Domaine de la Romanee-Conti and Henri Jayer swept all of its top 25 lots.

Its most expensive lot of the past six months comprised 12 bottles of Romanee-Conti 1988 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti from Burgundy’s Cote de Nuits region, which fetched $178,477 in Hong Kong in March, while 12 bottles of Cros Parantoux 1999 Henri Jayer from the village of Vosne Romanee sold for $148,200 in New York in February, Acker Merrall said in a statement.

The data came amid signs appetite for top Bordeaux is also reviving after prices dropped between 2011 and 2014. While Burgundy has frequently led global auctions in the past couple of years, Californian wines as well as those from northern Italy and the Rhone are also featuring among top bids and there are indications of a pickup in demand from U.S. clients.

“America is buying more A to Z, collecting more wines and getting stronger in general,” Acker Merrall Chairman John Kapon said in the e-mailed statement. “It also shows how much potential remains in the Far East. China is still really in its development stages, yet continues to spend the most money.”

Collectors from Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan and mainland China accounted for more than 48 percent of sales, while Americans were responsible for more than 45 percent of dollars spent, according to Acker Merrall, whose revenue over six months exceeded $40 million.

Leading lots from Bordeaux sold during the period included six magnums of Chateau Petrus 2000, which sold for $44,619, as did 12 bottles of the same Pomerol estate’s 1989 vintage and 12 bottles of nearby Le Pin’s 2000 wine.

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