S otheby’s Wine continues its fall season with a single-owner sale, The Glass Cellar | 30 Years of Collecting, opening for advance bidding on Friday, September 30th and closing live on Saturday, October 15th starting at 10:00 AM. The sale reveals a collector with a cross-continental passion for wine and a steadfast commitment to the best of the Old and New World and in some of the greatest vintages in the modern era.
The sale opens with 38 consecutive lots of Pétrus, featured in bottle and magnum and iconic vintages 1945, 1959, 1961, 1982 as well as more modern classics 1989, 1990, 2000 and 2009. First Growth Bordeaux follows, led by Latour, which appears in the monolithic 1945 vintage. What follows is an array of legendary bottlings including 1961 Lafite, 1928 Haut Brion, 1959 Margaux and 2000 Mouton Rothschild in both bottle and magnum.
A concise, yet commanding Burgundy selection begins with lot 157 in the form of two magnums of 1986 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux. 12 lots of DRC follow, spanning three decades and 7 vineyards before Drouhin Marquis de Laguiche and Coche-Dury Corton Charlemagne bring this section to a close.
Masseto takes the sale abroad, spanning years 1997-2010 in bottle, magnum and imperial magnum formats and is followed by Sassicaia and Gaja before giving way to a towering vertical of Vega-Sicilia, spanning years 1948-2011.
Harlan Estate leads the sale’s New World offerings, opening with twin verticals in Lots 235 and 236; the former features each vintage between 1990-2015 in bottle and the latter, each vintage ever made (1990-2018) in magnum. The complete Colgin range follows and is represented in vintages 2001 to current release. Cult classics Hundred Acre, Realm and Scarecrow give way to Sine Qua Non, ending the sale on a decidedly high note.
The Glass Cellar – by Serena Sutcliffe, MW
Honorary Chairman, Sotheby’s Wine
I t is probably serendipity that I had just had the great good fortune to drink again one of the world’s most wondrous wines, Latour 1945, as I prepared to study the cellar of this remarkable consignor. For there, as if it were a lodestar for this sale, the bottle of this unforgettable wine leapt off the page at me, leading into a scintillating collection that radiates greatness. It could be described as California meets France, with a few exciting digressions elsewhere. Without a doubt, it is a collection of an enthusiast of clear vinous knowledge and a real love of quality from both New and Old Worlds, a person who has drunk deeply of the best and who is now offering a gorgeous array of wines to those who share his passion.
Our international, wine-loving clients can follow their subjective tastes to their hearts’ delight. And they can also spread their connoisseurs’ wings and perhaps try wines that they have heard discussed but never experienced, crossing the Atlantic with absolute confidence that this consignor has always gone for the top. Whether you adhere to Harlan or Haut Brion, Margaux or Maya, this sale is liquid temptation. It is rare to see such a fabulous run of Colgin or Bond, and the Petrus is astonishing. The fascinating possibilities for vintage and individual vineyard comparisons are everywhere, occasions not to be missed when they present themselves. Cross reference Cabernet Sauvignons and magnums with bottles. This is a sale where you can really play with the decades as well as styles of winemaking. It is also a sale of instant gratification, not requiring the patience that is, for me, in increasingly short supply. And venture into Italy for Masseto and Spain for Vega Sicilia Unico - it is worth the journey.
I think this gives you a scent and flavour of what awaits in this exuberant collection of wine, as generous in its range of epoch and star-strewn splendour as in its spirit of adventure. No one needs a compass in this sale to find endless treasures.
30 Years of Collecting – by Jamie Ritchie
Worldwide Chairman, Sotheby's Wine & Spirits
This superb cellar comes from an incredibly knowledgeable, passionate and well-traveled gentleman who has been collecting and enjoying wine for over 30 years.
When we met, it became very apparent that curiosity, generosity and friendship are traits that he values and imbues. Greeted with a magnum of Dom Pérignon Rosé 1998, we enjoyed a tour of the cellar, followed by a five hour lunch which included a blind tasting of legendary wines: Montrachet, Drouhin 04; Marcassin, Marcassin Chardonnay 13; Kongsgaard, The Judge Chardonnay 14 (mag); Peter Michael, Belle Côte 17; Petrus 02; Pichon Lalande 82; Masseto 08; Harlan 12; and Hundred Acre, Kayli Morgan 14 – a modest 12 bottles for the 7 of us. You can immediately see how the curiosity, generosity and friendship shines through from the moment you meet him.
His passion and perfectionism is visible in every aspect of his life, whether it be perfecting the Margarita, having tasted a superb version at the George V in Paris, or building his beautiful glass cellar, where the wines are impeccably kept under climate control, or the beautiful table setting for our lunch.
He is also a person of conviction, dispensing sage advice and analyzing each and every situation, while living life to the full. He was the person who introduced me to Baz Luhrmann’s “Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen)” and there is no surprise that he has lived in New York once, but left before it made him hard, and he now lives in Northern California, but will leave before it makes him soft! And……..he truly loves the wines of Napa – who doesn’t?
The Collector: This incredible collection amassed over three decades reveals the collector’s devotion to the great wines of France, Spain, Italy and the United States and his commitment to many of the greatest producers therein. A collection both meticulous and focused, it is epitomized by the prevalence of iconic vintages 1928, 1945, 1959, 1961 and 1982 along with comprehensive verticals from producers Pétrus, Latour, Masseto, Vega-Sicilia, Harlan and Colgin.
The Wines: The great majority of these wines were acquired through reputable auction houses and wine merchants, with a large percentage of domestic wine coming from direct allocation.
The Cellars: The wine in this sale was collected from a purpose-built and temperature-controlled residential cellar located in North America.
Inspection and Shipping: Each bottle in the sale was inspected, packed and cataloged by a Sotheby’s Wine Specialist, before being transported to our warehouse via air freight and temperature-controlled truck.
- Chateau Haut Bailly 1900 (1 BT)
- Château Lafite 1982 (1 MAG)
- Château Lafite 1961 (3 BT)
- Petrus 1961 (1 BT)
- Petrus 1982 (4 MAG)
- Château Latour 1945 (1 BT)
- Château Pichon Longueville, Lalande "Vertical" (3 BT)
- Château Cheval Blanc 1928 (1 BT)
- Château Haut Brion 1959 (2 BT)
- Château Haut Brion 1961 (1 MAG)
- Château Margaux 1945 (1 BT)
- Cheval Blanc
- Vosne Romanée, Cros Parantoux 1986 Henri Jayer (2 MAG)
- Domaine de la Romanée-Conti
- Corton Charlemagne 2004 J.-F. Coche-Dury (5 BT)
- Dom Pérignon
- Sine Qua Non
Cheval BlancLots 116–126
Vosne Romanée, Cros Parantoux 1986 Henri Jayer (2 MAG)Lot 158
Domaine de la Romanée-ContiLots 159–170
Corton Charlemagne 2004 J.-F. Coche-Dury (5 BT)Lot 174
Dom PérignonLots 175–181
Sine Qua NonLots 469–493
- Harlan Proprietary Red 1997 (4 BT)
- Harlan Proprietary Red "Vertical" (29 MAG)
- Colgin, IX Estate Red Wine 2013 (3 BT)
- Bond Vecina, Cabernet Sauvignon, Oakville, Napa Valley 2013 Bond Estates (2 MAG)
- Scarecrow, Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 (6 BT)
- Realm, The Absurd 2013 (3 BT)
- Promontory 2016 (1 MAG)
- Sine Qua Non, The Inaugural, Eleven Confessions Vineyard, Syrah 2003 (3 BT)
- Sine Qua Non Icarus 1999 (1 BT)
- Hundred Acre, Wraith Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 Hundred Acre Winery (3 BT)
- Maya, Dalla Valle 1991 (2 MAG)
- Maya, Dalla Valle "Vertical" (5 BT)