Record HK$3.67 million paid for case of Burgundy at Hong Kong auction

PUBLISHED : Monday, 25 November, 2013, 4:54am
UPDATED : Monday, 25 November, 2013, 5:21pm

Twelve bottles of French Burgundy sold for HK$3.67 million in Wan Chai yesterday, smashing the world auction record for a case of wine.

The case of Romanee-Conti 1978 was bought by a mainland buyer who outbid a fellow national at the Christie's sale.

The price works out at about HK$306,000 a bottle, or HK$51,000 per glass. It far exceeded the pre-sale estimate of HK$1.1 million.

"This is a new world record for any case of wine," said the head of Christie's international wine department, David Elswood. The previous record for a case of wine sold at auction was set in 2006 when six magnums of Chateau Mouton-Rothschild 1945 sold for US$345,000, Elswood said.

Record prices for wine come even as the benchmark Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index erased gains made in the first 10 weeks of the year. While Bordeaux still dominates wine-fund holdings, Burgundies have taken an increasing share of top 10 slots at auctions. Last year Burgundy set more than 400 sales records among a worldwide total of 894. Sales on the mainland have remained robust this year despite government measures to discourage extravagance among officials.

The last day of the three-day auction, Fine and Rare Wines Autumn Actions 2013, started yesterday morning at the Convention and Exhibition Centre, during which more than 150 lots of wine were up for grabs.

Other highlights at the sale included Richebourg Grand Cru - Vintage 1959 and Chateau Pavie - Vintage 2000.

Christie's Hong Kong said the city was an international centre for the wine market and had allowed the two-century-old auction house based in London to present a rich diversity of rare wines to a global audience.