Wine, whisky and spirits market - 2014 auction review

Following an undesirable couple of years, 2014 has seen positive signs for the wine market, which has found its feet after sharp price corrections. Bids have become steady once more, and this time it's Burgundy, rather than Bordeaux, that's on top.

The shift from the previous collector favourite Bordeaux has been in motion for some time, but 2014 brought hard evidence, with Acker - the world's leading wine auction house - stating Burgundy overtook Bordeaux sales for the first time this year.

Meanwhile, the market for collectible whisky has continued with impressive growth, with values for the rarest bottle rising by 18.7% in the 12 months to October.

With collectors realising the potential of spirits and collectible drinks, we have also seen impressive sales of port, gin, rum and beers, suggesting exciting times for 2015.

Top wine, whisky and spirit sale of 2014

A bottle a week for more than two years!

A new world record for wine sold at auction came to Sotheby's in October, with the auction house offering an astonishing 114-bottle lot of the illustrious Burgundy Romanee-Conti.

Encompassing every vintage from 1992-2010, with six bottles of each, it sold for $1.7m - or $1,700 a glass - in Hong Kong.

2014's most important wine, whisky and spirit sales

A Macallan 'M' decanter, made in collaboration with Lalique, became the most valuable whisky ever sold at auction, at Sotheby's Hong Kong in January. It made $628,000.

Former Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson's wine collection made $3.8m over a series of three auctions in Hong Kong in May.

A cask of Macallan whisky - the first brought to auction - achieved a new world record sum of $206,500 with Spink.

The collection of tech entrepreneur James H Clark went up for sale at Sotheby's in November, causing much excitement among collectors. Offering some of the world's finest Italian and Rhone wines, the sale totalled $2.5m.

The Roy Welland collection, the largest wine collection ever consigned to auction, saw its first sale at Wally's in September, totalling an impressive $6.6m. The new auction house, formed by long standing experts in the field, also showcased California cult wines in October, with collectors looking further afield than France.

December brought a Christmas treat for one collector, who paid a record $212,000 for a set of 16 bottles of the world's oldest rum - made by slaves in Barbados in the 1780s.

It was a breakout year for…

Historic drinks, such as the world's oldest rum, a bottle of G'vine gin made to a 15th century recipe, and Pol Roger Champagne from 1914. The latter was Winston Churchill's favourite vintage, harvested as Germany advanced on France during the first world war. All of these historically significant tipples created excitement and were met with strong bids.

It was year to forget for…

Chateau Lafite Rothschild investors, who rapidly snapped up the illustrious wine during the Bordeaux bubble, but were faced with the news that, in 2014, values are 40% lower than at the height of the buying frenzy in 2011.

One you may have missed…

A bottle of Cognac from 1790 headlined a sale of spirits at Bonhams in May, realising an outstanding $50,000. However, having been made over 200 years ago, it's likely not drinkable.

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