You might have stumbled upon jaw-dropping headlines about wine auctions and several-hundred-thousand-dollar bottles going on the block and wondered how that could even be possible. Perhaps you’ve been left aghast by such unbelievable numbers. Or maybe asked if indeed wine auctions characterized by their stuffy arenas, uncomfortable chairs, and raised paddles have any importance at all.
Well, as it turns out, these auctions indeed have colossal significance and can be an excellent way of finding those near-priceless, hard-to-get vintages at a bargain. With their roots in London, wine auctions have been in existence for close to 200 years with auction houses like Christie's and Sotheby's making millions worth of wine sales regularly. Rare, old Bordeaux for unheralded bargains have never lost their grandeur too.
English wine merchants prefer to dispose of considerable stocks of lesser wines, including those with a lower value and are approaching their prime. This also means the auction benefits such persons whose wineries aren’t the best in the market. As of now, similar auctions held in Monaco, Paris, South Africa and elsewhere around the planet, led by the much-publicised Heublein Auctions attract millions of fine wine collectors.
Yes! They’ve Importance
Because the scope of fine, rare wines on offer at such actions exceeds what’s in the market, these auctions are made of more than the boredom and old, rickety seats we often see. Plus, prices at these congregations frequently fall below the retail levels, sometimes even lower than wholesale.
Many have confessed to having attended a couple of them, including the famous raucous live sales filled with champagne-sipping, wide-eyed collectors. And from their sentiments, wine auctions are some of the most beautiful locations to be.
The trend nowadays is to bid online, and indeed it is taking root. Fall auction done online is perhaps the most popular nowadays because of the rare bottles, and old vintages are worth trying. It can be a perfect choice if being part of the “splashiest of the splashy” live wine auctions is your preference. The best part of it is, you can bid in person, by phone or even online via live audio and video.
Thinking online? Study the art!
There’s just one problem with online only auctions. Unlike the conventional ones, most of them only feature a single bottle for all to see. Websites also require a form of membership before one place a bid. But the glamour is the full range of bottles on offer and the openness of the entire process.
We’ve heard and seen persons striking rich in these auctions. One aficionado stumbled on a 12-year old cult Syrah in Washington for just $55. It merely shows how incredible it can be. The only notable downside if you choose it is to forget to check the bid and lose out!