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List of charity auction lots at Decanter’s Wine Gala Dinner

The official list of auction lots on offer at Decanter's Charity Wine Gala Dinner has been released, including Haut-Brion imperials direct from Prince Robert of Luxembourg's cellar, magnums of Warre’s 1983 Vintage Port and a magnum of Dom Ruinart Blanc 1988 Champagne, with proceeds going towards the Royal Opera House Foundation

1. Champagne Ruinart

The House of Ruinart is the oldest established Champagne house, producing finest quality Champagnes since 1729. Their famous cellars, acquired in 1768, are among the largest in the region, and are Gallo-Roman in origin. Like most Champagne cellars, they are the product of ancient chalk mining, and extend 38 metres below the ground and are 8 km long. The chalk helps to keep the cellars at a constant 11 degrees Celsius. The chalk pits were classified as a historic monument in 1931. The Ruinart taste is greatly dependent on the aging in these chalk cellars: three to four years for non-vintages, and nine to ten years on average for a Dom Ruinart.

This lot comprises one Magnum of Dom Ruinart Blanc 1988 and one Magnum of Dom Ruinart Rose 1988) plus a private tasting with one of Ruinart’s winemakers at their exquisite Reims Maison (by private appointment) and additionally a lunch or dinner for two people.

2. Ornellaia

Tenuta dell’Ornellaia was founded in 1981, in a beautiful, unspoiled part of Tuscany. Since then, passion and dedication, coupled with a unique terroir and an extraordinary microclimate, have brought the Estate’s prestigious labels great success and recognition as one of the most important wineries in the world. Ornellaia, the flagship wine, was first produced with vintage 1985, from an extremely careful selection of the vineyards grown on the Estate. Produced in limited quantities, hand crafted and vinified with the utmost care and attention to detail, Ornellaia has constantly received top ratings from the most influential opinion leaders around the world.

This lot comprises one Imperial (six litres) Ornellaia 2007 ‘Classic Label’ and a personalized visit of Tenuta dell’Ornellaia for two people, including a multi-vintage tasting during lunch or dinner and one overnight stay.

3. Maison Louis Jadot

Louis Henry Denis Jadot founded Maison Louis Jadot in 1859. But even before then, the story of Maison Jadot had its roots in the vineyards, with the family’s purchase of the Clos des Ursules, a Beaune Premier Cru, in 1826. Today, the vineyards of Maison Louis Jadot are spread across 154 hectares of Burgundy, from the Côte d’Or to the Mâconnais and down into Beaujolais, with many of these of Premier and Grand Cru status. Their Oenologist Jacques Lardière is one of the most respected winemakers working in Burgundy today, from impressive purpose-built cellars on the road to Savigny-les-Beaune.

This lot comprises a 12-bottle case of the Louis Jadot Monopole, Beaune, Clos des Ursules 2005 and a private tour and tasting at Louis Jadot in the heart of Beaune for four people with Jacques Lardiere, followed by lunch at the newly renovated Couvent des Jacobins with selected old vintages from Louis Jadot’s library wines. To be taken on a mutually agreed weekday before 31 March 2013.

4. Clos de Tart

The 7.5 hectares Monopole Clos de Tart is situated in the southern part of Morey-St-Denis, and has remained intact since its creation in the 12th century. It was granted Grand Cru classification in 1939. Since Sylvain Pitiot took over here in the late 1990s the potential of this great Grand Cru has been properly realized. The Domaine owns the whole of the ancient vineyard of Clos de Tart and nothing else. Monsieur Pitiot and his team are totally focused on producing sublime wine of the very highest standard in the magnificent surroundings of this ancient property. The wines are matured in 100% new oak and are bottled unfiltered. They display a seductive perfumed nose and are harmonious, refined and complex on the palate.

This lot comprises a guided tour for four people of the historic estate followed by a tasting with owner Sylvain Pitiot and a Magnum of 2003 Vintage.

5. Warre’s Port

Warre’s has been leading the Port trade since it was established as the first British Port House in 1670. A pioneer of a great tradition with over 300 years of history, their legacy is built on the superb quality of Warre’s Vintage Ports and on an unwavering commitment to quality and successful innovation. Warre’s is now owned by the Symington family, whose ancestry in the Port trade spans a period of over 350 years, through 13 generations, from Walter Maynard to the present generation of Symingtons. They have gained a wealth of experience as producers of Port and no other family involved in Port production today possesses such an unbroken lineage, stretching right back to the very beginnings of Port. 

This lot comprises three magnums of Warre’s 1983 Vintage Port and a visit for four to the Graham’s Port Lodge in Oporto, followed by lunch with a member of the Symington family in the Director’s dining room. The party of four will then be invited to visit one of the family’s Quintas in the Douro Valley where they will enjoy lunch, dinner and one night’s stay. The family’s Quintas are situated in one the world’s most beautiful wine regions, a UNESCO World Heritage area. This visit must be made in 2012 at a mutually agreed date.

6. Château Haut-Brion

Haut-Brion’s viticultural history can be traced back further than its Médoc First Growth counterparts. Samuel Pepys even mentioned it in his diaries. Situated in what is now Pessac-Leognan the estate was purchased in 1935 by Clarence Dillon, an American financier, since when it has enjoyed a steady and continual resurgence to a position of pre-eminence. Dillon’s great-grandson, Prince Robert of Luxembourg, now runs the estate. A key influence in the reputation which Haut-Brion enjoys today is the Delmas family. George Delmas was manager and wine-maker until 1960, when his son Jean-Bernard took over. Jean-Bernard was a visionary figure, responsible for a number of important innovations, and on his retirement in 2003 his son Jean-Philippe took over as Directeur Général.

The lot comprises four imperiales of the 2009 vintage (each six litres), one each of Haut-Brion, La Mission Haut-Brion, Le Clarence de Haut-Brion and La Chapelle de La Mission-Haut-Brion.

7. Look the part – Sleeping Beauty’s courtiers.

Be the proud owner of two costumes created by Italian designer Luisa Spinatelli, from the 2002 and 2004 Natalia Makarova production of The Sleeping Beauty. These exquisitely designed male and female courtiers’ costumes were worn by Royal Ballet dancers Kristen McNally, Kenta Kura and Andrej Uspenski in the ballroom scenes in Act I and Act III. Both are made of the finest Italian silk taffetas and trimmed in French silk and lurex lace. They were made in our own production workshops.

Dame Monica Mason, Director of The Royal Ballet, has also contributed to this wonderful ensemble with a signed pair of Swarovski encrusted crystal pointe shoes from Cinderella.

Kindly donated by the Costume Department of the Royal Opera House and The Royal Ballet.

8. Behind the Scenes in Wonderland

A wonderful chance for two guests to watch a performance of Christopher Wheeldon’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland from the wings of the stage of the Royal Opera House. The Royal Ballet invites you to witness the behind-the-scenes elements that are needed to stage this magical ballet. You will see, from your unique vantage point, the set changes, clever puppetry and mechanical props, and of course the exquisite choreography danced by our artists, and you will also meet the cast at the curtain calls after the performance. Refreshments will be provided during the interval. Guests will also receive a signed poster from the cast. We invite you to choose one of two dates – 26 March or 16 April 2012. The cast will include Lauren Cuthbertson in the title role, Federico Bonelli as the Knave of Hearts, Edward Watson as the White Rabbit and Steven McRae as the Mad Hatter. The casting is subject to change in case of illness or injury.

Kindly donated by Ballet Stage Management.

9. Sponsor a cracking role and shadow a Stage Manager on La Fille du régiment!

This is a unique opportunity to support a role in this fabulous production of Donizetti’s comic opera La Fille du régiment. Ann Widdecombe will act the cameo role of the Duchesse de Crackentorp, a role previously performed by Dawn French. Acknowledgement of your sponsorship will be made in the castbook, and we will invite you to meet Ann, watch her in rehearsals and see her develop into a grand duchess! Stage rehearsals are on 10, 11, 12 and 13 April.

In addition, we are offering an opportunity for two guests to experience a privileged behind-the-scenes view of the production. You will be invited to put on a headset and shadow a Stage Manager and watch from the prompt corner and side stage. You will be witness to the drama during the interval scene change and the preparation seconds before the artists go on stage. There will also be the rare chance to observe part of the performance from the follow spot dome in the roof of the auditorium. We invite you to choose from any of the following performance dates: 21 (mat), 25, 27 April, 1, 7, 10 May 2012

Kindly donated by Opera Stage Management, the Lighting Department and The Royal Opera.

10. Up close and personal with the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House

A very rare chance for two people to experience the view from the orchestra pit and to sit in close proximity to the musicians of the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House and their Conductor, during a dress rehearsal or performance. This will be sure to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Earplugs for volume protection will be supplied! The Orchestra have suggested sitting in on one of the following productions: The Royal Ballet’s La Fille mal gardée with a score composed by Ferdinand Hérold; Ballo della regina to a score by Verdi, coupled with La Sylphide with Herman Løvenskiold’s music; the new production with commissioned scores by Jonathan Dove, Nico Muhly and Mark-Anthony Turnage for Metamorphosis: Titian 2012 or Donizetti’s La Fille du régiment with The Royal Opera. Dates are to be confirmed, and will be subject to the rehearsal and performance schedule.

In addition the Music Director Sir Antonio Pappano has donated and signed one of his batons to include in this auction lot.

Many thanks to the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Royal Opera House Orchestra Management and Sir Antonio Pappano.

11. A Private Violin Performance

Peter Manning, Concert Master of the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, has offered to play exclusively for you and your guests, either in your home or at a London location of your choice. Peter is an acclaimed violinist as well as a conductor and keen chamber musician. In 1983 he was appointed leader of the LPO by Solti. He founded the Britten Quartet (1986–96), which established an international reputation and discography, and led the RPO (1997–9). He was made Concert Master of the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House in 1999. His repertory includes all the major works, and he appears as a soloist with leading British and international orchestras. His private recital will certainly make your event very special and bring you immense enjoyment. For a programme, Peter has suggested a half-hour solo performance, possibly a Bach Sonata or Partita. The date for the private recital can be mutually arranged, and we will work with Peter’s rehearsal and performance schedule.

With many thanks to Peter Manning.

12. A Night with Plácido Domingo

A Royal Box dining experience for six guests based around the performance of Plácido Domingo’s Operalia Winners. The stellar cast for this single performance on Wednesday 25 July 2012 includes Joyce DiDonato, Nina Stemme, Joseph Calleja, Erwin Schrott and Rolando Villazón. The Royal Opera House’s Music Director, Antonio Pappano, will be the maestro this evening. A sumptuous dinner from Company of Cooks will be served by your personal butlers. Guests can bring their own wine (the corkage will be waived).

Dinner is generously donated by Company of Cooks.

For more information and to book tickets to the Wine Gala Dinner, which takes place on Tuesday 13 March at 7pm, contact Yolanda Sze on +44 (0)20 7212 9356 or email yolanda.sze@roh.org.uk.

To make enquiries regarding the lots and to place advance bids, contact Antonia Essex from Christie’s Wine Department on +44 (0)20 7752 3101 or email aessex@christies.com.

Written by Decanter

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