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Christie’s previews Hospices de Beaune wines

As Christie’s prepares to launch the annual Hospices de Beaune wine sale, the London-based auctioneer has released its impressions of the 2008 vintage.

Now in its fourth year under Christie’s management, the sale – to be held on Sunday November 16 in Beaune’s covered market – will feature 544 barrels (450 red and 94 white), compared with 607 in 2007. This reflects the year’s limited production, due to poor weather conditions affecting yields.

However, Anthony Hanson MW, senior consultant to the wine department and Burgundy specialist, has called 2008 a ‘Burgundy lover’s vintage’.

Despite the severely curtailed quantity, he said, the 12 whites on offer are better and more consistent than in 2007, while the 31 reds ‘combine great value with lovely quality’, and boast delicious fruitiness and impressive length.

Now in its 148th year, the world’s oldest charity wine auction is considered a good barometer of Burgundy prices for the current vintage.

In 2007, the sale raised €4.29m, while its Millennium vintage sale still holds the record of over €5.2m.

For more information about the 2008 Hospices de Beaune auction, including Christie’s tasting notes, visit the Christie’s Hospices de Beaune site.

Written by Maggie Rosen

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