The private collection on sale at auction would have any wine enthusiast dreaming. It contains the finest French wines ever produced (especially from Burgundy, the Loire, Alsace and the Rhone), stored in optimal conditions and almost always bought via direct allocation or from cavistes have allocations themselves. What more could you possibly want?
The wine enthusiast is selling part of his cellar and is happy to offer such jewels which have been patiently and progressively bought over the course of 30 years. Happy, because this passionate oenophile is able to keep a good part of his collection for his own personal consumption and can part with some of his wines without too much regret. “I’ve been buying wine for almost 30 years and have allocations with a number of prestigious domains, and I’m also a loyal customer to certain wine shops which have allocations themselves. I therefore receive my allocations every year, which contributes to building up my collection. I’ve got to a stage where I have many more wines than I’m able to drink.”
Eclectic tastes and a common thread: refinement and cellaring potential
This curious, passionate enthusiast is interested in most of France’s winemaking regions, with a special preference for Burgundy, the Loire, Alsace and the Rhone. “I’m very curious and enjoy exploring the diverse terroirs and styles of wine.” There is, however, a common denominator in the different wines of this collection: finesse and elegance, but also cellaring potential, and the ability to get better with age. “I like mature wines, especially when it accentuates the refinement and subtility of tertiary aromas. This holds true for both red and white wines. People have a tendency to think that white wines don’t have anything to gain from aging, but I personally think that’s wrong: I’ve had some unforgettable tastings of mature white wines, for instance some Coche-Dury from the mid-1990s, or wines from Domaine d’Auvenay from the mid-1990s or early 2000s. Also with Chablis, which, after 15 to 20 years of aging are exceptional. I will never forget tasting a 1996 Dauvissat and old Raveneau…even if, for me, the height of finesse is embodied in a mature Rayas! »
The seller also prioritized large format bottles where possible: “I’ve always tried to buy large bottles, because it favours the quality and aging capacity. I find that large bottles really do make the difference, whether it be for tasting right away or cellaring; then, of course, there’s the festive element to it.”
This wine lover has always made it his primary concern to source wines as directly as possible, where possible from the domain. Having been interested in wine from a very young age, he was lucky enough to develop connections with many winemakers. “In the 1990s, it was still relatively easy to get allocations from great domains, including in Burgundy, where you could easily get an appointment at the domain. It wasn’t at all how it is these days, where even wine shop owners reserve their best bottles for their most loyal customers. I was very lucky to have been in the right place at the right time, when these wines were a little less in fashion and therefore not as difficult to find as they are now.”
Storage at optimal conditions
When a wine enthusiast has spent almost 30 years establishing a cellar, you can imagine that they have done everything to ensure the most perfect conditions possible. “Almost half of my wines are stored in my personal cellar. The other half is stored by a professional in Paris, in chalk quarries. In both cellars, the conditions are optimal.”
A treasure trove of fine, mature wines
In each of the regions, this wine enthusiast turned to the best producers, with whom he built long-lasting connections. He spent a long time putting his cellar together, visiting domains along the way. The wines in this auction thus represent the best of the wines produced in France.
In Burgundy, for instance, there are prestigious signatures such as Domaine de la Romanée Conti, Domaine d’Auvenay, Coche Dury, Comtes Lafon, Dujac, Comte George de Vogüé, Dugat-Py, George Roumier, the very fashionable Domaine Arnaud Ente, and the great names of Chablis such as Raveneau and Dauvissat. Fine, ready-to-drink wines have pride of place in his collection. Around 20 lots of large format Burgundy are available in the sale.
The Rhone wines are equally outstanding. You will find old Hermitages from Jean-Louis Chave, including the cult cuvée Cathelin 1998, 2000, 2003, 2009 – a cuvée which is no longer released onto the market –, the cuvée Da Capo from Domaine du Pegaü (1998, 2000), Château-Rayas in old (and some of the best) vintages (1985, 1988, 1990, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2008), the Réserve des Célestins from Henri Bonneau (1998, 2000, 2001), as well as other great Châteauneufs, Guigal’s LA-LA-LA, Côte-Rôties from Jamet or René Rostaing… The selection even includes one of Rayas’ satellite domains: Fonsalette, in several vintages. One of the most incredible selection of Rhone wines that we’ve ever seen!
In the Loire, the finest names also feature in the selection: Clos Rougeard (1989, 1997), Dagueneau, La Goutte d’Or 1990 from Clos Naudin, old vintages from Domaine Huet, La Coulée de Serrant or the very sought-after Stéphane Bernaudeau.
In Alsace, the selection focuses on the finest wines in mature vintages with, for instance, the Riesling Clos Saint-Hune Vendanges Tardives 1983 from Trimbach or the Gewurztraminer Quintessence de Grains Nobles Cuvée d’Or 1989 from Domaine Weinbach.
In other regions, you will find other incredible wines, such as the Grange-des-Pères 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2009, La Petite-Sibérie 2001 (Clos des Fées), Château Pichon-Longueville-Comtesse-de-Lalande 1995, Yquem 1989, Château-Margaux 1995, Pierre Overnoy’s Pupillin, Champagnes from Jacques Selosse…This is quite simply, one of the most breathtaking selection of wines we have ever seen. When you think that this is only a part of this collector’s wines….
Happy bidding to one and all!
Access the sales catalogue:
13/12/2018 – 14h00 : Other regions 1910-2016
13/12/2018 – 14h30 : Rhône 1999-2009 – white
13/12/2018 – 15h00 : Rhône 1978-2010 – red
13/12/2018 – 15h30 : Bourgogne 1996-2015 – white
13/12/2018 – 16h00 : Bourgogne 1988-2015 – red