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Christie’s sells 1945 Clos de Tart Grand Cru bottles for 14x estimate

Two bottles of Clos de Tart Grand Cru 1945 sold for £43,750 at Christie’s last week, against an estimate of £2,000-3,000.

Christie's sells 1945 Clos de Tart Grand Cru bottles for 14x estimate

Christie’s wine and spirits department in London concluded its latest live auction, ‘A Legacy Preserved: The Last Treasures of The Avery Collection’, at Christie’s King Street on Friday (7 June).

Described by the auction house as a “one-off”, the sale featured wines belonging to late wine merchant John Avery MW, who died 2012, as well as his father, Ronald Avery, who ran the family vintners before his son.

This final offering from the family cellar follows on from an auction in 2016, also hosted by Christie’s. Wines featured in the sale include bottles of Petrus, McWilliams and Penfold’s through to the Californian wines of Mondavi and Heitz.

The 993-lot sale was 100% sold by lot and 100% sold by value.

Speaking to Eloise Feilden, Noah May, head of wine & spirits department, Christie’s EMEA, called it “hugely successful”. The sale hammered over the high estimate, generating a total of £2,567,675.

“This does justice to this legendary cellar and the legacy the Avery family will leave on the wine trade in the UK,” he said.

Among the highlights of the sale was lot 476 — two bottles of Clos de Tart, Grand Cru 1945. Estimated at £2,000-£3,000, the lot was sold for £43,750.

Asked why he believes the bottles outsold their estimate by such a distance, May explained: “You rarely see historic vintages of this wonderful Grand Cru Monopole come to market, so when you see legendary 1945 vintage and with this provenance, we were hopeful of enthusiastic bidding.”

The top-traded vintage of Clos de Tart Grand Cru on fine wine marketplace Liv-ex this year is the 2014 – which last traded at £4,250 per 12-bottle case.

db got in touch with Liv-ex to ask about last week’s sale. Liv-ex co-founder Justin Gibbs called the 1945 vintage bottles “rare as rocking horse s**t with impeccable provenance”.

“You don’t get to buy this stuff everyday,” he said.

Other highlights from the sale included twelve bottles of Petrus, Pomerol 1990 which sold for £37,500, one magnum of Château Latour Premier Cru Classe, Pauillac 1961 which realised £25,000 surpassing its estimate of £4,000-6,000, and one magnum of Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé, Musigny Grand Cru, Cuvée Vieilles Vignes 1947, which sold for £23,750 against an estimate of £5,000-8,000.

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