Romanee-Conti 1988 at $146,000 Tops Acker Hong Kong Sale

A case of Romanee-Conti 1988 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti fetched HK$1.13 million ($146,000) at an Acker Merrall & Condit wine sale in Hong Kong as the New York-based auction house marked its fifth anniversary in Asia.

The sale, held over two days last weekend, totaled HK$45.89 million and also drew winning bids of HK$467,400 for six bottles of Romanee-Conti 1997 and HK$393,600 for three bottles of the 1990 vintage from the same Burgundy estate.

Acker’s Hong Kong sale came five years after the city abolished taxes on wine, enabling it to overtake London and New York to become the world’s largest wine auction center. Chinese demand for the Bordeaux 2009 and 2010 vintages helped drive the Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index to a peak in June 2011, since when it has retreated 29 percent.

“In this past auction, Bordeaux was noticeably stronger, as the lack of demand for 2012 futures was replaced by savvy collectors satisfying their appetite with older vintages,” Acker CEO John Kapon said in an e-mailed statement. “It was no surprise that Burgundy was successful, but the whites stood out as being more active than usual.”

Among top Bordeaux in the sale, a case of Chateau Petrus 1982 Pomerol sold for HK$492,000, while a single bottle of Petrus 1950 fetched HK$41,820 and a magnum of Chateau Mouton-Rothschild 1947 went for HK$49,200.

The demand for Burgundy wines at the Acker sale came after a case of Echezeaux 1999 from producers Henri & Georges Jayer fetched 14,950 pounds ($22,600) at Bonhams’ London May wine sale, beating the auction house’s estimate.

Following is a table of major wine auctions held so far this year, with the total sold. Links are to auction websites or results statements.

Jan. 11/12:     Zachys, Hong Kong                     $4.65 mln
Jan. 25/26:     Acker, Merrall & Condit, Hong Kong    $6.82 mln
Jan. 30:        Sotheby’s, London                     $2.22 mln


Feb. 2:         Hart Davis Hart, Chicago              $4.40 mln
Feb. 21:        Christie’s, London                    $1.47 mln
Feb. 23:        Acker, Merrall & Condit, New York     £3.10 mln
Feb. 23:        Sotheby’s, New York                   $1.46 mln
Feb. 27:        Sotheby’s, London                     $1.04 mln


March 7/8:      Zachys, New York                      $5.81 mln
March 14:       Christie’s, New York                  $1.37 mln
March 15/16:    Christie’s, Hong Kong                 $6.19 mln
March 21:       Christie’s, London                    $1.22 mln
March 22/23:    Acker Merrall & Condit, Hong Kong     $4.93 mln
March 23:       Hart Davis Hart, Chicago              $4.42 mln


April 3:        Acker Merrall & Condit, New York      $2.30 mln
April 3/4:      Sotheby’s, Hong Kong                  $8.86 mln
April 17:       Sotheby’s, London                     $2.06 mln
April 23:       Christie’s, Amsterdam                 $1.23 mln
April 25/26:    Zachys, New York                      $4.13 mln
April 26/27:    Sotheby’s, New York                   $2.60 mln
April 27:       Acker Merrall & Condit, New York      $2.48 mln


May 2:          Christie’s, London                    $1.93 mln
May 14:         Christie’s, Geneva                    $3.96 mln
May 17/18:      Hart Davis Hart, Chicago              $6.42 mln
May 22:         Sotheby’s, London                     $1.31 mln


May 31/June 1:  Acker, Merrall & Condit, Hong Kong    $5.91 mln
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