1945 Chateau Mouton Rothschild headlines record breaking wine sale

A set of 10 bottles of Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1945 Bordeaux led an auction of wines from the collection of billionaire William Koch.

The lot made $343,000, an increase of 185% on a $120,000 valuation, in the May 19 sale at Sotheby's New York.

Mouton Rothschild 1945
Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1945 is one of the world's most sought after wines

The wine is considered one of the finest ever bottled and regularly achieves huge sums at auction. A Jeraboam (equivalent to six bottles) made $114,000 at Christie's in 1997.

Koch explained prior to the sale: "My cellar is the result of nearly four decades of collecting.

"I aimed to assemble the very best Bordeaux and Burgundy where you could taste the love and the passion that the vintner had in making it."

Buyers fought over some spectacular vintages, including six magnums of 1989 Vosnee Romanee Cros Parantoux (sold for $171,500) and a methuselah (six litres) of 1991 Romanee Conti that realised $159,250.

It was the largest wine auction ever held, pulling in a record $21.9m over two days. The majority of lots sold for significantly over their estimates.

Jamie Ritchie, CEO and president of Sotheby's Wine in Asia and Americas, said: "The exceptional provenance and condition of the wines matched the scale and ambition of his collection."

"This sale sets a new benchmark for the industry."

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