Château Cantenac-Brown, a third growth in the 1855 Bordeaux classification, is to sell some of its own collection of 1986-2000 vintages, including a number of large-size bottles such as Nebuchadnezzars (comparable to 15 litres/20 standard bottles each).

The Margaux-based estate was sold by AXA Millesimes to UK entrepreneur Simon Halabi earlier this year (see http://www.decanter.com/news/81961.html).

London-based Bonhams auctioneers will handle the 27 September sale which will comprise the equivalent of 110 dozen bottles, though buyers will have the option to purchase further stocks. The sale is expected to raise £32,000.

‘It is rare to see a vertical vintage flight particularly with large format bottles like Imperials (eight bottles), Richard Harvey MW of Bonhams told decanter.com. ‘The wines have perfect provenance. Not only have the been bottled at the chateau, but they have matured in the estate’s cellar.’

Cantenac-Brown produces a 180,000 bottles a year of powerful, often tannic wine; its gravel vineyard of 42 hectares is planted with 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc.

The most valuable bottle in the upcoming sale is thought to be a Nebuchadnezzar from 1989, estimated at £580-680; the highest-value case is anticipated to be the 2000 vintage at £280-340. The sale should make over £32,000.

Château director José Sanfins will hold a tasting of bottles and magnums at Bonhams on 12 September.

Cantenac-Brown takes its name from John Lewis Brown, son of British wine merchants and a friend of Toulouse-Lautrec who designed the château in the style of a Victorian mansion. The estate was sold to insurance group AXA in 1989.

Written by Conal R Gregory MW