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Acker Merrall & Condit 2012 January sale presents world-class collections of finest wines
John Kapon, CEO of Acker Merrall & Condit Companies, said, "In 2011, Acker became the first wine auction house in history to break US$100 million in annual global sales."

HONG KONG.- Acker Merrall & Condit, the World's leading wine auctioneer and America's oldest fine wine merchant, will hold its first 2012 Hong Kong sale on 13 & 14 January at Island Shangri-La and Grand Hyatt Hong Kong. A total of 992 lots of top quality wines, estimated at over HK$80 million/ US$10 million, will be offered in the sale, including a number of world-class collections featuring finest Burgundy, Bordeaux and Californian wines.

John Kapon, CEO of Acker Merrall & Condit Companies, said, “In 2011, Acker became the first wine auction house in history to break US$100 million in annual global sales. In fact, with 2011 revenues over US$110 million, Acker has achieved a global Triple Crown -- #1 in Asia, #1 in America, and #1 in the World. Our November Hong Kong auction, featuring Don Stott’s amazing collection of Burgundy and hailed as the “Greatest Burgundy Sale in the World”, was the largest auction conducted anywhere last year and set over 140 individual world records. That has also resulted in more spectacular Burgundy cellars coming out of the woodworks joining our fleet. With the demand and passion for Burgundy continuing to escalate, we are excited to present an extensive selection of Burgundy in this sale. The top 10 is dominated by DRC masterworks. Bordeaux lovers will be excited to find in this sale an extraordinary priceless Lafite and rare vintages coming directly from Chateau Palmer. There is also a world-class collection of California Cabernet classics and cults including vintages of Screaming Eagle. With these and hundreds of other remarkable lots, we welcome 2012 and the Year of Dragon with our first sale of the vintage, bringing the joy of wine to collectors worldwide.”

Acker has meticulously assembled an impressive array of wines from Domaine de la Romanee Conti. Nine of the top ten lots are superlative bottles of DRC Romanee Conti, including 12-bottle cases of the 1985 (Estimate: HK$1.2-1.6 million/ US$150,000-200,000 each), 1990 (Estimate: HK$1.2-1.6 million/ US$150,000-200,000, Lot 855), 2001 (Estimate: HK$720,000-960,000/ US$90,000-120,000, Lot 840), parcels of 1988 (Estimate: HK$640,000-960,000/ US$80,000-120,000 each, Lot 852 & 853), 1989 (Estimate: HK$600,000-800,000/ US$75,000-100,000, Lot 854) and 6 bottles of the legendary 2005 (Estimate: HK$560,000-800,000/US$70,000-100,000, Lot 338).

The one bottle cracking the “Top Ten” that is not a Romanee Conti is equally extraordinary: a double magnum of 1870 Lafite Rothschild (Lot 843), one of the rarest bottles of wine on earth. This superb wine was resting in the deep cellars of the Chateau itself, until sold at an auction held at the famous Hotel de Crillon in Paris on 6th December 2003. Claude Maratier, an expert before the Court of Appeals in Paris and also a member of the Merchandise Brokers who can appear before the Court of Appeal as experts in matters such as wine authentication, gave a written attestation of the true origins and authenticity of this special bottle after that sale. Based on the provenance document, this is an once-in-a-lifetime bottle that could only be described as “priceless”. A copy of this attestation will be made available to the buyer upon request.

Among the three featured collections presented in this sale, the first one is essentially a Chateau Direct offering of the world’s finest Bordeaux, via the cellars of one of America’s most prominent Bordeaux lovers and importers. The wines were collected immediately and directly upon release from the chateaux, shipped under the most exacting temperature and humidity-controlled conditions, and have remained in perfect storage since their arrival. All wines are in the original wooden cases and are in pristine condition. Highlights include a 12-bottles case of 2000 Petrus (Estimate: HK$320,000-480,000/US$40,000-60,000, Lot 172) and 6 magnums of 2000 Lafite (Estimate: HK$160,000-240,000/US$20,000-30,000, Lot 122).

The second featured collection has tremendous vintage depth, particularly larger bottles, starting with a lot featuring a bottle and a magnum of 1949 Latour (Estimate: HK$40,000-56,000/US$5,000-7,000, Lot 217), 12 bottles of 1961 Haut Brion (Estimate: HK$200,000-280,000/US$26,000-35,000, Lot 208) and a double magnum of 1971 Petrus (Estimate: HK$48,000-72,000/US$6,000-9,000, Lot 232). This collector used his connections to get multiple cases of highly-allocated wines, and there are two cases of 1993 Roumier Bonnes Mares (Estimate: HK$96,000-128,000/US$12,000-16,000 each, Lot 263 & 264) as well as 12 bottles of 1959 Leroy Chambertin (Estimate: HK$160,000-240,000/US$20,000-30,000, Lot 272).

The third featured collection, also the largest one in this sale, comes from a noted physician and his wife, passionate perfectionists who have been collecting wine for nearly four decades. Cabernet Sauvignon is the collector’s favorite varietal, so this selection favors classified Bordeaux and fine California wines. Almost every major wine is available from 1982; an example of this cellar’s depth is 1982 Chateau Lafite including a 12-bottle case, 6 magnums, 3 double magnums (Estimate: HK$320,000-480,000/US$40,000-60,000, Lot 629-631), and an imperial (Estimate: HK$240,000-320,000/US$30,000-40,000, Lot 632).

Equally noteworthy are Petrus featured in original wooden cases, including an imperial of 1989 (Estimate: HK$240,000-320,000/US$30,000-40,000, Lot 727), 6 magnums of 1989 (Estimate: HK$320,000-480,000/US$40,000-60,000, Lot 728), 3 double magnums of 1989 (Estimate: HK$320,000-480,000/US$40,000-60,000, Lot 729) and parcels of 6 magnums of 1990 (Estimate: HK$320,000-480,000/US$40,000-60,000 each, Lot 731 & 732) amongst many other lots of Bordeaux’s most exclusive wines.

Over 300 bottles of Chateau Mouton Rothschild can be found in a mind-bending array of vintages and sizes, including an historical vertical lot beginning with the 1934, concluding with the 2004, and featuring 47 different vintages in all (Estimate: HK$280,000-400,000/US$35,000-50,000, Lot 679).

A special selection of Chateau Palmer vintages coming directly from the cellars of the Chateau itself will be featured, boasting completely unique and outstanding provenance that is quite unrivalled. The star lot of this section consists of very recent 2010 that has not only never ever been done before in the history of wine auctions, but will never again be available as well. It spans the entire range of bottle that have been produced at the Chateau in the past decades, from a half bottle all the way up to the Nebuchadnezzar of which only very few have been produced annually. Also here and for the first and only time in the history of Chateau Palmer, Acker presents a 15 liter bottle, the elusive Balthazar. This is the only time such a bottle will be produced and it will be numbered 1/1 and signed by Thomas Duroux for this occasion when the wine is finished by the middle of next year (Estimate: HK$120,000-200,000/US$15,000-25,000, Lot 330). Other highlights include an instant vertical collection of vintages 2000-2009 with a whole original wooden 6-pack case of each (Estimate: HK$80,000-120,000/US$10,000-15,000, Lot 327) and a vertical collection of 7 double magnums in individual wooden boxes (Estimate: HK$40,000-56,000/US$5,000-7,000, Lot 329).

In this sale, Acker offer especially an instant collection of California’s most collectible wine, Screaming Eagle’s Cabernet Sauvignon spanning 8 rare vintages. All bottles are in perfect condition with original wooden case (Estimate: HK$600,000-800,000/US$75,000-100,000, Lot 377).

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