Burgundy: Going Once, Going Twice. Sold for Nearly a Record Price

The Hospices de Beaune Charity Auction in Burgundy achieves its second-highest result in history.

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753 barrels went under the hammer at the Hospices de Beaune wine auction (Photo: BIVB)
753 barrels went under the hammer at the Hospices de Beaune wine auction (Photo: BIVB)

The 163rd edition of the Hospices de Beaune wine auction in Burgundy achieved its second-highest result in history, generating approximately €23.3m (about $25m). According to the Bureau Interprofessionnel des Vins de Bourgogne (BIVB), the charity auction conducted by Sotheby’s on November 19 attracted around 700 bidders. Last year, the auction closed with an extraordinary record-breaking sum of €31m (about $33.8m.)

A total of 753 barrels (228 liters each) were auctioned, with the most famous barrel, the "Pièce des Présidents" - this year a Mazis-Chambertin Grand Cru - fetching €350,000. The new owner is the Château de Couches winery. The proceeds from this barrel will benefit two organizations dedicated to medical research, health preservation, and improving life expectancy, as decided by the board of the Hospices de Civils de Beaune.

Last year, the sale of the famous President's barrel alone reached €810,000, setting a record for the auction that has been held since 1945. The buyers were the houses of Louis Latour and Joseph Drouhin, who also paid homage to Louis-Fabrice Latour, who died in September 2022 and had been instrumental in supporting and promoting the auction.

This year's Pièce des Présidents barrel has a unique feature, as reported by the BIVB: The wood for the barrel came from the same 220-year-old oak used in the restoration of the spire of Notre-Dame in Paris, which was destroyed in the 2019 cathedral fire. ITP

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