The top wine auctioneer in the USA over the past couple of years, Hart Davis Hart, started 2012 as it intends to go on, with a thumping auction of fine and rarest wines achieving a white glove auction (100% of lots sold) and hitting the top end of its estimate for a sales total of $3.5m, led by Burgundy.
The Chicago auction hall was bursting at the seams despite many bidders (from most states in the USA, and many more from the Americas, Europe and Asia) being absentees.
"We were thrilled to bring so many top wines with impeccable provenance to the market and provide such strong results for our consignors. I am proud of the HDH team; they are the most experienced in the world and they showed that on Saturday," enthused CEO Paul Hart.
Fuelling hints from previous sales that Californian wines might be particularly strong performers this year a number of lots from the west coast did well, notably the wines of Sine Qua Non.
For example, six bottles of 2003 Sine Qua Non Syrah, The Inaugural (listed at $2,600-$3,800) sold for $4,780 and four bottles of 2007 Next of Kyn Syrah Number 1 Assortment ($2,000-3,000) drawing a final bid of $3,824.
It was Burgundy which was the real backbone of the sale, however, most notably the wines of Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Leroy, and Roumier.
For example, 10 bottles of 1992 Corton-Charlemagne, Domaine Leroy achieved $5,019, (nearly double their estimate) and six bottles of 1996 Chambertin, Armand Rousseau brough sold for $8,962.
In total, a $1.49m final result was achieved for the 570 lots of Burgundy, which will give the auctioneer extra confidence for their next auction which is devoted to Burgundy alone. It is scheduled for March 24th.