The 40's Win Big at Bonhams London Wine Auction


While the world – France included – was pushing for the end of World War II, some of Europe's finest winemakers were, like the vines they meticulously nurtured, fighting through tough social soil to create something transcendent.
The result, at least according to a recent auction by London-based auction house Bonhams, speak for themselves – a 12-bottle case of Chateau Latour from that era sold for more than $30,000, according to a recent article by Bloomberg Business.
“The sale came amid signs appetite for top Bordeaux is reviving after a three-year price drop in the face of cooling Chinese demand and a decline in the quality of vintages coming to market since 2011,” the article said. “The Liv-ex Fine Wine 50 Index has risen for the past two months after falling 40 percent from its 2011 peak.”
A single bottle of 1945 Chateau Mouton Rothschild garnered more than $7,000, Bloomberg said.
“Michael Broadbent, founder of Christie's wine department, ranked 1945 as outstanding in his book 'Vintage Wine',” the article said, “putting it among the top 15 years of the 20th century for red Bordeaux.”
 However, WWII wines weren't the only stars at the auction.
“While the sale showed continuing collector interest in top wines from the vintage that market the end of the Second World War, demand for more recent wine focused on lots such as one comprising six bottles of Chateau Petrus 1990,” the story said.
The six bottle-lot of Petrus sold for more than $15,000. According to the auction's catalog, the sale price fell within the range of the wine's pre-auction, top-end price prediction.
The Petrus' sale is indicative of growing interest in wines from the 90's as well as from the 21sst century, Bonhams boss Richard Harvey told Bloomberg.
“Interest has moved on to younger vintages now; '82 was the iconic vintage for so long, but people now are looking at '89 and '90, and 2000 and 2005 as well,” Harvey told the publication.
Bloomberg noted that “a six-bottle Domaine de la Romanee-Conti assortment from 2004” sold for more than $15,000 and that “a single bottle of Romanee-Conti from the same year” captured a sale price of more than $8,000.
According to Bonhams' website, a collection of six 2004 French wines – a Romanee-Conti, a Richebourg, a La Tache, a Montrachet, a Grands-Echezeaux and a Romanee-St.-Vivant – sold for more than $17,000.
Photo Credit: Bonhams

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