Romanee-Conti Leads Christie’s Sale With Petrus, Latour

A case of Romanee-Conti 1988 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti Burgundy fetched 81,900 pounds ($128,000) at a Christie’s International Plc wine sale in London this month as Chateau Petrus and Chateau Latour led the bidding for Bordeaux.

The price for the Romanee-Conti, including buyer’s premium, compared with an upper estimate of as much as 90,000 pounds before fees, according to results of the June 6 auction on Christie’s website. Six bottles of the same producer’s 1999 and 1995 wines fetched 44,460 pounds and 42,120 pounds respectively.

Appetite for vintage Burgundies has helped underpin the market this year as demand remains weak for Bordeaux. The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index has dropped 2 percent since mid-March, after four months of gains, as investors showed reluctance to buy 2012 Bordeaux wine futures after lower-than-estimated price cuts.

The 2012 Bordeaux marketing season “concluded with little change from the earlier pattern of generally disappointing sales due to the high release prices demanded by the chateaux,” said Chris Smith, investment manager at The Wine Investment Fund in London, in his latest monthly market report. The fund, invested in Bordeaux, has about $50 million under management.

Among top Bordeaux in the Christie’s sale, a case of Chateau Petrus 1990 Pomerol sold for 29,250 pounds, a similar quantity of Chateau Latour 1982 Pauillac fetched 12,870 pounds and 12 bottles of Chateau Cheval Blanc sold for 9,945 pounds.

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:         Acker Merrall & Condit, New York      $2.22 mln
May 22:         Sotheby’s, London                     $1.31 mln
May 24/25:      Zachys, Hong Kong                     $5.73 mln
May 25:         Christie’s, Hong Kong                 $6.32 mln
May 30:         Christie’s, New York                  $0.71 mln
May 31:         Christie’s, New York                  $1.93 mln


May 31/June 1:  Acker, Merrall & Condit, Hong Kong    $5.91 mln
June 6:         Christie’s, London                    $1.85 mln
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