What is a wine Auction?

A wine auction is a specialized event or platform where wines are sold to the highest bidder. These auctions can be held in physical locations, such as hotels or auction houses, or they can be conducted online on dedicated wine auction websites. Wine auctions often feature rare and collectible wines that aren't easily available in the regular market. Here's a breakdown of the concept:

  1. Cataloging: Prior to the auction, a catalog (or listing for online auctions) is typically created, detailing the wines on offer. This includes information about the wine's producer, vintage, region, bottle size, and often tasting notes or ratings from wine critics.
  2. Bidding: Potential buyers place bids on the wines they're interested in. In a live auction, an auctioneer leads the event, calling out the current bid amounts and seeking higher offers. In online auctions, participants place their bids over a set period, with the highest bid at the close of the auction winning the item.
  3. Provenance: The history and storage conditions of the wine (its provenance) can greatly affect its value. Wines that have been stored in optimal conditions, with a clear ownership history, often fetch higher prices.
  4. Payment: Once a wine lot is won, the winning bidder is required to pay for it, often adding a buyer's premium (a percentage of the final bid amount) to the auction house.
  5. Delivery: After payment, the auction house or platform arranges for the delivery of the wine to the buyer. Some auctions might also offer storage solutions.
  6. Seller's Commission: Individuals or entities that consign their wines for sale at the auction typically pay a commission to the auction house based on the sale price of the wine.

Wine auctions are popular among collectors, investors, and enthusiasts looking for rare bottles, older vintages, or unique finds that might not be available in the traditional retail setting. They also offer wine collectors a platform to sell bottles they might want to divest from their cellars.

If you are interested in divesting please contact us for a Valuation & Cellar assessment today.