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Three ‘one-of-a-kind’ bottles raise over $500,000 at Sotheby’s NY spirits auction

The first spirits-only auction for Sotheby’s New York included a Cognac bottled in celebration of rapper Jay Z’s 50th birthday and a 1967 Macallan with artwork from Sir Peter Blake.

A bottle of 1967 whisky from the The Macallan’s Anecdotes of Ages Collection, with artwork by Sir Peter Blake, went for the highest amount, of $437,500.

This limited edition whisky and art collection with Blake consists of 13 one-of-a-kind bottles of the 1967 whisky, and the bottle in this auction was A New Era of Advertising. It was offered alongside a print donated by Sir Peter Blake as well as a bespoke trip to The Macallan Estate in Speyside, Scotland.

Jamie Ritchie, worldwide head of Sotheby’s Wine, said: ‘Sotheby’s Wine and The Macallan have had a longstanding relationship for many years, and it has been a privilege to sell some of the brand’s most iconic and sought-after bottles – with the A New Era of Advertising bottle now joining this illustrious group.’

The proceeds from that lot will go to the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s Diversity, Equity, Access and Inclusion Initiatives.

Jay-Z birthday Cognac

A bottle of D’USSÉ 1969 Anniversaire Limited Edition Grande Champagne Cognac, bottled in celebration of rapper Jay-Z’s 50th birthday and signed by him, went for $52,500, with the money raised going to his charity, the Shawn Carter Foundation.

D'USSÉ 1969 signed by Shawn Carter

D’USSÉ 1969 signed by Shawn Carter. Credit: Sotheby’s NY

The Cognac comes in a diamond-shaped cut crystal bottle, with 24-carat gold leaf wrapping on the neck and decorated with the symbol of Le Croix de Lorraine. This bottle sold at Sotheby’s is the only one to include his signature, and a further limited run of the Cognac will made available for consumer purchase in the spring.

Jay-Z hit the headlines recently by selling a stake in his Champagne brand, Armand de Brignac, to LVMH last month.

Hennessy XO decanter

The final in this trio, was A Masterpiece Hennessy XO decanter by architect Frank Gehry, selling for $18,750. Proceeds will go to the Asian American Business Development Center, helping smaller businesses with financial hardships as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Hennesy-XO decanter

Hennesy XO decanter. Credit: Sotheby’s NY

Designed to mark the 150th Anniversary of the Hennessy’s first X.O. Cognac in 1870, the decanter is made of glass and gold, and was number one of 150 individually numbered decanters produced.

Spirits only

The rare whisky and cognac auction was the first dedicated spirits-only sale for Sotheby’s New York.

Ritchie said ‘We are thrilled with the results achieved for the three exceptional charitable lots presented today in our first dedicated spirits sale in New York.

‘Over the past few years, we’ve witnessed a staggering increase in demand for prized, rare whiskies – and the strong prices realised during today’s sale are a perfect illustration of this rapidly growing trend.’

In 2019, a bottle of 1926 Macallan sold for a record breaking £1.5 million at Sotheby’s in London. 

See also:

Rare whisky and Yquem 1975 lead Sotheby’s online auctions

How to spot a fake whisky

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