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Napa Valley Wine Auction tops $6m

This year's Napa Valley Wine Auction raised $6.12 million, with $300,000 apiece paid for lots of Cult Californians Diamond Creek and Harlan Estate.

The top bid was $320,000 (€339,734) for a mixed lot of 26 magnums from Oakville Winegrowers, together with a selection of wine-related activities.

Highest winning bids for wine alone were two for $300,000 (€318,500): one for a vertical collection of nine magnums of Harlan Estate from 1990-1998, and one for nine bottles, one a 9-litre Salmanazar, representing nine vintages of Diamond Creek Vineyards Lake Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon. The latter included the winery’s last remaining bottle of its first vintage, 1978.

Along with expected high bids for cult favorites Colgin Cellars, Bryant Family and Dalla Valle, new CE2V and second-year Pillar Rock Vineyard were in the top ten. CE2V is Mitch Cosentino’s new winery in Pope Valley in the Napa Valley appellation, while Pillar Rock is owned by Ron Kuhn of Illinois.

Kuhn also topped the barrel lots with his 2000 Pillar Rock Cabernet, which brought in $66,100 (€70,182) for ten cases.

Second among the barrel lots was Shafer Hillside Select at $60,300 (€64,033), with CE2V third receiving a winning bid for $56,450 (€59,934). Other hot newcomers among the barrels included Gargiulo Vineyard and Gemstone.

The top bidder overall, Ona Roth of Santa Barbara, California, spent $491,700. Second was restaurateur Dee Lincoln of Plano, Texas, who spent $465,300.

Participants paid $2,500 (€2,654) per couple to attend. Vintner Robert Peccota and his two daughters were the chairs. Next year that honor will fall to the Trinchero family who produce Sutter Home, Monteviña and Trinity Oaks, as well as Trinchero wines.

The Napa Valley Wine Auction remains the world’s largest charity wine auction, and has raised more than $42m (€44.6) for Napa Valley health, education and farm-worker housing in its 22-year history.

Top overall lots

Oakville Winegrowers – $320,000

Harlan Estate – $300,000

Diamond Creek Vineyards – $300,000

Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars – $130,000

Colgin Cellars – $115,000

Dolce – $110,000

Bryant Family Vineyard – $110,000

Dalla Valle Vineyards – $110,000

Napa Valley Vintners Association – $100,000

Heitz Wine Cellars – $100,000

CE2V – $100,000

Pillar Rock Vineyard – $100,000

Top ten barrel lots (10-case lots)

Pillar Rock Vineyard – $66,100

Shafer Vineyards – $60,300

CE2V – $56,450

Rudd Winery – $40,000

D. R. Stephens Estate – $37,975

Gargiulo Vineyard – $35,600

Joseph Phelps Vineyards – $30,425

Duckhorn Vineyards – $29,550

Robert Mondavi Winery – $29,500

Gemstone – $28,600

Top ten bidders

Ona Roth, Santa Barbara, CA

Dee Lincoln, Plano, TX

Anonymous bidder

Gary Rieschel, Mountain View, CA

Ronald Kuhn, Wheaton, IL

David Doyle, Newport Coast, CA

Chuck McMinn, Los Altos Hills, CA

Anonymous bidder

M. K. Koo, Hong Kong

John Quinn, Stockton, CA

Written by Paul Franson in California11 June 2002

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