US auctions: Phillips back on wine auction scene

  • Friday 10 November 2000

Auctioneers Phillips have arrived back on the wine scene with a 420-lot sale in St Louis, Missouri.

Edward Robert Brooks (pictured), a Chicagoan who is Phillips's director of fine wine auctions in North America, has assembled the sale, to be held November 18 at Phillips-Selkirk, as the house is known in Missouri. Further sales are contemplated.

Phillips has gone to St. Louis because for now it is unwilling to hold wine auctions in Manhattan, where it is still looking for a permanent home, its international executive director, Dan Klein, has said.

The auction, which is sizeably Francophile, includes a

number of large-format bottles and multi-vintage superlots as well as relatively inexpensive wines for immediate drinking.

Brooks's premium lots, estimated by value, include the

following: A vertical of Mouton-Rothschild imperials from 1983 through 1996, estimated at US$14,500-US$19,500 (£9,667- £13,000); Double magnums of Pétrus, one each from the 1978, 1981, 1982 and 1988 vintages, US$8,895-$12,045 (£5,930- £8,030); Double magnums of Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon, one each from the 1984, 1986, 1988 and 1990 through 1996 vintages, US$5,650-US$7,650 (£3,767- £5,100).

For celebrating the millennium (2001 version) on New Year's

Eve, one bottle of the 1901 Chateau Filhot, a Sauternes, which Phillips calls 'pristine': US$1,200-US$1,625, (£800- £1,083). In the easy-affordability bracket, a dozen bottles of 1985 Beaulieu Cabernet Sauvignon, US$150-US$210 (£100- £140).

For 10 months in 1999 and this year, Brooks headed Christie's North American wine department. Phillips, which purchased Selkirk, a local house, in 1998, was itself acquired last year by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, the luxury-goods empire whose chairman is Bernard Arnault. It suspended its New York wine auctions not long afterward.

In St. Louis, the buyers' premium will be 15 percent through

purchases of US$50,000 and 10 percent thereafter.

Wine Articles

Articles from Decanter magazine and the Decanter.com archive - interviews, features, country and region profiles, travel articles and more