Upcoming Auctions: April


5 – New York – Photograph

10 – London – Prints & Multiples

22 – Milan – Modern & Contemporary

23 – Amsterdam – Fine Wine

30 – New York – Prints & Multiples TBD


3 – Hong Kong – Fine Wine

4 – Hong Kong – Fine Wine

7 – Hong Kong – Watches

17 – London – Fine Wine

17 – Paris – Keith Haring & more

26 – New York – El Bulli Wine

27 – New York – Fine Wine

Acker, Merrall & Condit

3  – New York – Fine Wine 

27 – New York – Fine Wine


3 – New York – Photographs

29 – New York – Editions



Bill Koch vs Greenberg trial begins

The case is Koch v. Greenberg, 07-cv-9600, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

Koch is suing Greenberg in the US District Court over US$320,000 he spent on 24 bottles of wine in 2005, which has been said to be fake.  

Koch purchased what were advertised as wines from the Bordeaux and Burgundy regions, some dating to Napoleonic times and the Belle Epoque.  He claimed that Eric Greenberg, the founder and chairman emeritus of Scient Corp., who’d consigned the wines, defrauded him.

Koch’s lawyer, told the court that is was heartbreaking for a collector to find out that wine was not authentic, because “it was about more than just a bottle and a flavour.”

This isn’t Bill Koch’s first case screaming fraud.  Koch’s previous claims have included that he was sold counterfeit wine, marked “Th.J.,” that had purportedly belonged to Thomas Jefferson. Koch won a default judgment against German wine dealer Hardy Rodenstock, who’d consigned the purported Jefferson bottles to Christie’s for sale.

Cohen Buys Picasso’s ‘Le Reve’ for $155 Million

Steven Cohen, owner of SAC Capital Advisors LP, has bought Pablo Picasso’s “Le Reve” for $155 million from casino owner Steve Wynn.

This is the highest price paid for one piece of art in a private deal on record.


Bordeaux in 2012


With less than 1% of the wine market considered Investment Grade Wines, Bordeaux controls over 80% of that.  Above we can see a few Bordeaux indices broken down into components displaying YTD, 1yr and 5yr returns.

The Right Bank 100 clearly shows its 2012 dominance, posting a 4.6% annualized return.  With its components we see that it is strong in the short and medium term and displays an attractive investment over the past 5 years.  We look for the Second Wine 50 to make a comeback in 2013.  This previous year drop has opened up new opportunities to take advantage of its value.

Upcoming Auctions. January


24 – New York – Important Silver

30 – London – Fine & Rare Wines

Acker, Merrall & Condit

25-26 – Hong Kong – Fine Wine



Christie’s November 6 – Amsterdam – Fine Wine & Vintage Port

Christie’s (Amsterdam) will be having their Fine Wine & Vintage Port auction on November 6th.

The private collection that includes 1549 lots, valued at €1.0 – 1.4million is expected to sell around 85-90% of it’s prestigious jewels.  With bold expectations, (the last auction sold about 84% of it’s lots), the Dutch marathon will draw the most ambitious collectors in the country.

Several First Growths will go under the hammer.  But the real jewels will not be our typical French rarities that grace the cover of most of our typical wine collectors guidebooks.  Three important collectors choices will be:

  • Lot #1211 : Napoleon Cognac 1811 Vieille Fine Champagne. 1 bottle € 2500 – 3500 

A unique and very rare Napoleon Cognac 1811 recently discovered in an old Dutch wine cellar. The fact that this Napoleon Cognac was aged in cask for a long time before being bottled enhances the rarity of this bottle.

  • Lot #811: Graham’s Vintage Port 1945. 6 bottles in original wooden case € 3300 – 4500 

Graham’s Vintage Port 1945 is a legendary Port from a great vintage made in very limited quantities. This lot was offered directly from the cellar of Graham’s. The bottles have been stored in this cellar since bottling in 1948. Especially for our Christie’s Amsterdam sale 6 bottles were tasted, re-corked and labeled. This is a rare opportunity to acquire a legend in Port in the best possible provenance.

  • Lot #3: Trockenbeerenauslese 1975 Egon Muller, 1 bottle € 4000 – 4500 

Egon Muller is arguably the king of Mosel Riesling. The highest level of concentration Trockenbeerenauslese is only made in very limited quantities and then only in the best vintages. 1975 was a vintage with high sugar levels in the grapes at the time of harvest but also a great level of fine acidity balancing out the high sugar and making this a wine with an almost indefinite life.

With 85% expected successful bids won, the sale looks to posts around €1.20 million plus the sellers premium.  With First Growths in high demand in Holland, we expect to see a bigger percentage of lots sold and the auction not falling short of even the most ambitious analytical values.  The Liv-Ex has shown that prices are falling and opportunities are wide open for the taking.  I do not expect the Dutch investors to pass on these favorable exigencies.  With over 1500 lots, consignments are obviously plentiful.  Claire Sturm, at Christie’s Amsterdam says,”The lots come from various collectors  within the Dutch borders”.  November 6th can’t come any sooner.


Upcoming Auctions – November


November 6 – Amsterdam – Fine Wine & Vintage Port

November 7 – New York – Impressionists & Modern Art

November 8 – London – Fine & Rare Burgundy Wines

November 12 – Geneva – Important Watches

November 13 – London – Lalique

November 14 – Geneva – Fine Wine

November 16 – New York – Fine & Rare Wines

November 16 – New York – Magnificent Cellar of Charlie Trotter

November 20 – Online – Signature Cellars: Online

November 23 – Hong Kong – Fine Wines

November 24 – Hong Kong – Fine & Rare Wines: Burgundy

November 25 – Hong Kong – Fine & Rare Wines

November 28 – Hong Kong – Important Watches


November 2 – New York – Prints

November 5 – New York – Impressionism & Modern Art

November 7 – New York – Impressionism & Modern Art (Day Sale)

November 13 – Geneva – Important Watches

November 13 – New York – Contemporary Art (Evening)

November 14 – London – Finest & Rarest Wines

November 14 – New York – Contemporary Art (Day Sale)

November 17 – New York – Legendary Bordeaux & Burgundy 1816 – 2005

November 27 – Milan – Modern & Contemporary Art

Phillips de Pury

November 1 – New York – Evening Auction

November 15 – New York – Contemporary

November 16 – New York – Contemporary


November 5 – New York – Impressionism & Modern Art

November 12 – New York – Contemporary 

November 20 – London – Watches

November 21 – Hong Kong – Fine Wine, Cognac & Single Malt Whisky

November 23 – Hong Kong – Modern Watches

Acker, Merrell & Condit

November 9-10 – Hong Kong – Fine Wine

November 14 – New York – Fine Wine