The final and busiest quarter of the year is well underway at Langton’s. Our weekly auctions are now centralised, drawing stock from across the country which has increased both the breadth and depth of wines for sale each week. During the first month of the quarter, in addition to our regular weekly auctions we have also held a trio of special themed auctions including; Fabulous France, Celebrating the ‘90s and Seriously Italian - giving buyers the opportunity to browse a number of themed catalogues.
Demand for imported wine continues to grow, particularly at the top end. Stock flows in this sector are increasing, buoyed by strong price realisations for many blue chip wines. France is dominating the sales, with wines from Bordeaux and Burgundy providing the majority of both sales volume and sale value. Top growth Bordeaux is selling well, confirmed by recent hammer results including 2009 Chateau Mouton-Rothschild realising $1581 and 1986 Chateau Lafite-Rothschild achieving $2185. Some very old and rare vintages also went under the hammer recently including an imperial of 1934 Chateau Gruaud-Larose attaining $3174 and 1955 Chateau Gilette Creme de Tete, Sauternes fetching $565. Bottles of top Sauternes also performed well with a bottle of 2001 Chateau d'Yquem Sauternes attaining $1035 and a bottle of 1988 Chateau d'Yquem achieving $793.
Burgundy is also gaining momentum with a significant number of bottles of Domaine de la Romanee-Conti (DRC) going under the hammer. Recent highlights include 1980 DRC Romanee-Conti achieving $5750 and a bottle of 1994 DRC La Tache achieving $1610. Bottles of white Burgundy have also performed well evidenced by a magnum of 2008 Domaine Leflaive Les Pucelles 1er cru Puligny-Montrachet achieving $460 and a magnum of 2009 Francois Raveneau Valmur Grand Cru Chablis fetching $357.
Outside of Burgundy, old and rare vintages of Champagne are proving popular with a recent highlight, a bottle of 1976 Moet & Chandon Dom Perignon Oenotheque Brut, Champagne achieving $1270. Top Rhone has also fared well so far this quarter with 2009 Chateau De Beaucastel Cuvee Hommage Jacques Perrin, Chateauneuf-du-Pape realising $575, 1995 Chateau Rayas Reserve, Chateauneuf-du-Pape achieving $592 and a bottle of 2005 Guigal La Mouline, Cote-Rotie attaining $713.
While it is still early days in the context of Italian wines on the Australian secondary market, our special Seriously Italian auction saw several top wines from both Piedmont and Tuscany attract significant attention. Highlights included 2000 Bruno Giacosa Falletto Riserva Barolo achieving $736 and 2009 Tenuta Dell’Ornellaia Masseto, Bolgheri attaining $463. With a substantial increase in the number of top quality Italian wines now on the primary market, we expect to see a bigger presence of premium Italian wines on the secondary market in years to come.
There was a flurry of sales of super-premium American wines early in the fourth quarter. Rarely seen on the Australian secondary market in any volume, highlights included a magnum of 1995 Harlan Estate Red Wine, Napa Valley achieving $1610 and a bottle of 1996 Bryant Family Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley fetching $661.
On the domestic front, the market barometer Penfolds Grange has performed solidly so far this quarter. Recent highlights include a bottle of 1961 Penfolds Bin 95 Grange Shiraz achieving $1707, 1998 Penfolds Bin 95 Grange Shiraz attaining $639 and a bottle of 1971 Penfolds Bin 95 Grange Shiraz fetching $805. Magnums also continue to track solidly as evidenced by the sale of a 2002 vintage Penfolds Grange Magnum for $1266 and a magnum of 1979 Penfolds Bin 95 Grange realising $1366.
Australian blue chip fine wine is also performing well, particularly from classified producers. Recent highlights include an anniversary year bottle of 1973 Henschke Hill of Grace Shiraz achieving $635 and a bottle of James Halliday’s wine of the year - the 2010 Bass Phillip Reserve Pinot Noir realising $530. 1982 Wynns John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignon continues to soar achieving $633 in a recent sale.
2013 has been a year of momentous change for Langton’s. Moving both our Melbourne and Sydney offices and consolidating our warehouses into one has been a giant logistical challenge, but one which will ultimately reap rewards, with larger stock flows leading to larger and more diverse auctions. At the time of writing there is significant momentum in the secondary market. The traditional rush before Christmas is well underway and with an exciting selection of old and rare wine coming through auction in the next few weeks, we expect the momentum to continue well into the New Year.
For more information visit www.langtons.com.au *All prices include Buyers Premium.