HONG KONG--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Acker Merrall & Condit, the world's leading wine auctioneer and America's oldest fine wine merchant, launched the fall season in Hong Kong with a big bang and achieved an impressive total of over HK$50 Million/US$6.4 Million on 13 & 14 September at the Island Shangri-La and Grand Hyatt Hong Kong.
Among all the lots offered for sale, a large number realized prices well above the pre-sale high estimates. The sale was 98% sold and set 108 world auction records. There was frenzied bidding throughout the two-day sale especially for bottles rarely seen in the market. Several top-notch collections were presented including the featured collection of top Burgundy and Bordeaux consigned by ‘The Connoisseur Who Would Be King.’ This collection set 49 World Records and fetched a total of HK$9,114,300/US$1,168,500, significantly over the high estimate, proving yet again why the world’s greatest collectors continue to choose Acker Merrall to sell and buy their wines.
John Kapon, CEO of Acker Merrall & Condit Companies, said: “Continuing the momentum of our New York auction last weekend, the atmosphere here in Hong Kong was electric. People and the media keep talking about there being an economic slowdown coming in Hong Kong or China, but I couldn’t see anything of the sorts this weekend. Collectors made a point of attending this auction in person because they simply didn’t want to miss it, and then spent practically three times more than absentee bidders, even though both categories essentially won the same number of lots. The participation of buyers from mainland China was particularly significant as they competed vigorously with collectors from Hong Kong and around the globe for some of the greatest wines in the world, driving the prices of many lots beyond their estimates. American buyers notably bought 18% of this sale, an important indicator of a balanced and strong global market. Several US collectors even made the trip to HK just for this sale and feasted accordingly. The sale was absolutely sensational, demonstrating strength in all categories in this current diverse market.”
Burgundy Gems – DRC, Jayer and Leroy Lead the Way
Remarkable prices were achieved for fine Burgundy indicating its persistent and growing popularity in the market. Domaine de la Romanée-Conti Assortments were highly coveted and all sold for prices well above pre-sale expectations. Highlights included a two-case parcel of 1999 DRC Assortment in their original wooden cases (HK$442,800/US$56,769 per case, Lot 268-269, illustrated right), 2000 DRC Assortment (Lot 919) and 2001 DRC Assortment (Lot 920) in banded owc (HK$270,600/US$34,692 per case). Further highlights were 6 magnums of 1999 La Tâche in owc (HK$393,600/US$50,462, Lot 644), and 6 bottles of 1990 La Tâche (HK$221,400/US$28,385, Lot 921). Prices for Romanée Conti were also strong. 3 bottles of 2010 in banded owc sold for (HK$295,200/US$37,846, Lot 309), 3 bottles of 2003 for (HK$270,600/US$34,692, Lot 288) and 3 bottles of 2008 for (HK$270,600/US$34,692, Lot 289). A magnum of 2007 sold for a World Record price of HK$167,280/US$21,446, Lot 558). Also of note were 6 bottles of 1971 DRC Richebourg selling for HK$246,000/ US$31,538 (Lot 744), well over the high estimate and also setting a new World Record. In all, eleven new World Records were set for DRC.
A rare lot comprising 9 bottles of 1971 Échézeaux in pristine condition from a case bottled by Henri Jayer especially for Alexis Lichine achieved a strong price of HK$307,500/US$39,423 (Lot 687A, illustrated left). Another rare Jayer case of 1993 Échézeaux fetched HK$344,400/US$44,153 (Lot 234).
A World Record was set for 12 bottles of 2005 Leroy Romanée St. Vivant in owc that realized HK$344,400/US$44,153 (Lot 242). An impressive fifteen new world records were set for Leroy in this auction; in addition, eight were set for Rousseau, seven for Dujac, six for Meo-Camuzet and three for Liger-Belair. 2009’s were very sought-after, notably 12 bottles of 2009 Dujac Romanée-St.-Vivant (Lot 334), selling far above high estimate at HK$177,120/US$22,737, as did 3 magnums of 2009 La Romanée from Liger-Belair (Lot 513) which also sold for HK$177,120/US$22,737, both World Records.
The breadth of demand for Burgundy was highly notable, an important indicator of a healthy, growing market. World record prices were also set by Vogue, Roumier, Fourrier, Mugnier, Drouhin, Mongeard-Mugneret, Bouchard, Mortet, Mugneret, Clair Dau and Sauzet.
The Rejuvenation of Bordeaux Continues
The sale reflected the rejuvenation of demand for Bordeaux especially of the best vintages with excellent provenance. Pétrus was in high demand and the top selling lot was a 12-bottle case of 1982 Pétrus in owc which achieved HK$479,700/US$61,500 (Lot 541, illustrated right). Other notable Pétrus lots were two parcel cases of 2005 in banded owc (HK$295,200/US$37,846 per case, Lot 370-371) and 6 bottles of 2000 (HK$196,800/US$25,230, Lot 213).
Bidding was keen for rare Bordeaux of old vintages. The hammer went down after a fierce battle for 6 bottles of 1961 Mouton that sold for HK$246,000/US$31,538 (Lot 701), more than double the pre-sale high estimate. Strong demand for 6 bottles of 1966 Haut Brion (Lot 692) drove its price to HK$108,240/US$13,895, a price almost ten times above the pre-sale high estimate!
A magnum of 1998 Le Pin fetched HK$59,040/US$7,569, establishing a new World Record (Lot 677). Multi-case parcels from famous vintages of Pétrus, Lafleur, Lafite, Latour, Haut Brion, Mouton and Margaux were all in demand, led by a three-case parcel of 6 bottles of 1998 Pétrus in owc (HK$137,760/US$17,662 per case, Lot 633-635).
There was enthusiastic response in the market for superb vintages of Screaming Eagle which all saw healthy demand. A rare full case of Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon of its 1992 debut vintage realized HK$442,800/US$56,769 (Lot 687, illustrated right). 12 bottles of 2002 in owc (HK$186,960/US$23,969, Lot 304), 12 bottles of 2001 (HK$177,120/US$22,708, Lot 303) and 12 bottles of 2003 (HK$157,440/US$20,185, Lot 305) were further highlights.
Acker will hold its next New York sale on 5 October and Hong Kong sale on 26 October at Grand Hyatt Hong Kong featuring “The Great Curator”, another of the world’s greatest collectors.
Acker Merrall & Condit Asia Headquarters
About Acker Merrall & Condit
Founded in 1820, Acker Merrall & Condit is America’s oldest fine wine merchant and the world’s largest wine auction house. With affiliates in New York, Chicago and Hong Kong, the companies hold more than fifteen auctions a year, including Internet auctions. They are devoted to helping their customers buy and sell the best wines, and also to sharing with them the experience of enjoying wine. In recent years, the company has greatly expanded its services to education, tastings and the formation of wine clubs. Starting out as a family business, three generations of the Kapon family have been dedicated to bringing the best from the vine to their customers.