Estimates engulfed as Sotheby's Finest Wines sale makes $2m in America

Sotheby's conducted its anticipated 'Finest and Rarest Wines' sale last week; following on from our pre-auction article last month, we at Paul Fraser Collectibles thought a round-up of the leading results would go down well.

Two very special vintages sold for the same top price - a 1990 Château Petrus and a 1995 Château Cheval Blanc.  As we pointed out in our previous article, the Petrus was hotly tipped to lead the auction, with an estimate of $35,000-55,000.  It easily achieved this, selling for an excellent $45,375.

In contrast, the Cheval Blanc surprised everyone, smashing its rather modest high estimate of $7,000 by nearly $40,000.  The 1995 vintage, produced from 53.5% Cabernet Franc and 46.5% Merlot grapes, was described by Sotheby's as "tremendously opulent" with a nose of smoky blueberries.

The 1982 Château Petrus discussed in our pre-auction article sold for only few thousand less, the hammer dropping at $42,350.  Another successful lot consisted of seven bottles of the popular 1982 Château Lafite.  Despite slight damage to the labels and an estimate of $20,000-25,000, the Lafite realised $30,250.

Also worth a mention were 11 bottles of La Tache 1995 Domaine de la Romanee-Conti; this "tawny beauty", blessed with a powerful nose of plums and cinnamon, had a high estimate of $20,000.  It easily surpassed this, selling for $27,225.  The wine producer has had much success of late - for example, this 1988 vintage we wrote about last month.

This highly successful auction totalled over $2m, which Sotheby's will undoubtedly be delighted with.  The ongoing vitality of the fine wine market, particularly with investment from the nouveau-riche of China, suggests that now would be a great time for collectors and investors to join the party.


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