Christie's has announced that its global wine sales for 2012 will exceed $90m, securing its position as the leading auction house for wine this year.
The total represents the second year in a row in which Christie's has surpassed the $90m mark for its wine auctions, despite a mixed year for the wine market as a whole; the Liv-ex 50, which tracks the prices of the 50 top Bordeaux first growths, has seen a decrease of 24.2% in the last two years.
Christie's strong results can be attributed to the number of important collections it has hosted this year, most notably the Private Cellar of Henri Jayer, the legendary winemaker known for his innovative techniques. This auction was topped by 12 bottles of the Vosne-Romanee Cros Parantoux 1985, which beat the $129,000 high estimate by 108.8% to sell for $269,359.
The second most valuable lot of the year was a vertical selection comprising 92 bottles of Chateau d'Yquem, spanning 1900-2000. Offered at November's Fine Wines auction in Geneva, the lot brought $243,828, selling 11.8% above its $218,000 high estimate.
The overall success of Burgundy in 2012 is reflected in Christie's results, with wines from the region making up eight of the top 10 sales. Aside from Chateau d'Yquem, the only other Bordeaux to appear within the list is Chateau Cheval-Blanc, which sold for $203,918 in December to set an auction house record for a case of standard-sized bottles.