Rare Penfolds Grange vertical expected to break $350k record

A total of 1,800 bottles of Penfolds are set to go under the hammer at Australian auctioneer Langton’s, including a set of Penfolds Grange, dating from 1951 to 2014, which is expected to break the previous auction record of AU$349,500 (£180,780).

The auction, called Rewards of Patience Auction, kicks off today and ends on Sunday 15 December.

The previous record for a set of Penfolds Grange dating from 1951– the first vintage that Grange was produced – to 2013, was $349,500. The set sold at Langton’s in December 2018. 

Two bottles of the prized 1951 are due to be auctioned off, each expected to sell for over AU$70,000 (£36,000).

The record for a single bottle of 1951 Grange currently stands at AU$80,386 (£45,758), also achieved at Langton’s at the end of last year.

Other lots of interest include a 1963 St Henri, 1965 Penfolds Bin 389 and 1971 Penfolds Bin 389.

Commenting on the sale, Tamara Grischy, head of auctions at Langton’s, said: “In 1995, I remember selling a set for $30,000. As the Penfolds brand has continued to evolve and become one of the biggest wine brands in the world, the demand keeps increasing.

“It’s very rare to see one bottle, let alone two, of the first Grange, which was a wine that Penfolds first chief winemaker Max Schubert made 68 years ago as an experiment. Both bottles are in amazing condition, and have outstanding provenance.

“This is a historic vintage, and represents the beginning of modern Australian wine. It is believed there are less than 20 bottles in circulation.”

To mark its 175th anniversary, Penfolds launched its first ever Clare and Barossa Valley blend in a rare ‘Special Bin’ release in October this year. 

In August, the Treasury Wine Estates-owned producer launched its 2019 collection, covering the vintages 2015-2018, starting with the 2018 Bin 51 Eden Valley Riesling and bookended by the 2015 Grange.

Back in May, it also teamed up with Champagne House Thiénot to release three Champagnes to mark its milestone year. 

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