SUITE OF DIAMONDS
Japanese Whisky Achieve Fantastic Results at Zachys Asia New Year Sale
Rare Japanese whisky took center-stage at Zachys Asia’s New Year Auction on 24 January at Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong. The Japanese whisky section was 100% sold and achieved a spectacular total of over HK$2.61 million/US$337,072 against a pre-sale estimate of HK$1.6 million/US$210,516.
The sale realized a grand total of over HK$20.7 million/US$2.67 million offering a stunning array of exceptional Scottish and Japanese whiskies alongside Bordeaux and Burgundy gems.
Jeff Zacharia, President of Zachys, commented: "We are delighted to kick off the auction season in Hong Kong with such phenomenal results. In a packed saleroom, bidding was consistently active throughout this exciting sale pushing the prices for many lots beyond their estimates. Whisky performed exceptionally well and blue-chip Burgundy and Bordeaux were highly sought after.
"All the 98 lots of Japanese whiskies on offer were sold out at impressive prices, clearly reflecting the enormous interest and strong demand in the market for this category, especially in Asia. The interest for whisky in the auction market has started to build up in the past few years and I believe that its popularity will continue to grow in the global marketplace.”
A SPECTACULAR OFFERING FROM THE HISTORIC CELLAR OF GRAHAM LYONS There was keen interest for wines from the cellar of Graham Lyons which was 100% sold. It is one of the greatest collections of rare wines in the world and almost all wines were purchased on initial release and have since been stored at Octavian in the United Kingdom until this auction. Highlights from the collection included:
Lot 160 - An imperial (6L) of Chateau Latour 1975 Sold for HK$44,100/US$5,690 Estimate: HK$20,000-30,000/US$2,600-3,800
Lot 162 - 12 bottles of Chateau Latour 2003 Sold for HK$110,250/US$14,226 Estimate: HK$60,000-90,000/US$8,000-12,000 Lot 163 - 12 bottles of Chateau Margaux 1982 Sold for HK$91,875/US$11,855 Estimate: HK$55,000-80,000/US$7,000-10,000
EXCEPTIONAL JAPANESE WHISKY Bidding was spirited in the saleroom for rare Japanese whisky and resulted in remarkable prices well above pre-sale estimates. Rare bottles from Hanyu Ichiro’s “Playing Card” series were eagerly sought after. Each bottle of the series has a different card face and contains whiskies from casks distilled as early as 1985 and as late as 2000.
The top lot was a Suit of Diamonds of 13 bottles from Hanyu Ichiro’s Malt Card series that realized HK$318,500/US$41,097 (Estimate: HK$260,000-400,000 /US$34,000-55,000, Lot 652, illustrated on P.1).
Two bottles featuring the extremely rare Black & White Joker and the Colour Joker, the two final cards of the series released in 2014, commanded a strong price of HK$116,375/US$15,016 (Estimate: HK$60,000-90,000/US$8,000-12,000, Lot 653), well exceeded pre-sale expectations.
Elliot Faber, Hong Kong based whisky specialist, said: “With 100% of all Japanese whisky lots being sold at record prices, The Zachys New Year Auction showed that there are still increasing demands for rare and limited bottlings not only from the closed distilleries of Hanyu and Karuizawa, but also from the distilleries who are still in operation such as Suntory’s Yamazaki, Nikka’s Yoichi and Miyagikyo.
"This year, collectors and enthusiasts alike will be thirsty for more single casks and older vintage bottlings from all of Japan’s distilleries.
“People haven’t forgotten Scotland either. If there were less attention to the Scotch this time around, that only means there is a lot of room to grow in this category and Zachys’ offered some extremely collectible bottles. I look forward to seeing the offers at the next auction,” said Faber, who is also Beverage Director for Ronin, Yardbird, and Sunday's Grocery.
Further highlights in the Malt Card series included:
Lot 650 - 1 bottle of Hanyu Ichiro’s Malt Card - Ace of Clubs Sold for HK$26,950/US$3,477 Estimate: HK$10,000-15,000/US$1,300-1,900 Lot 651 - 5 bottles of Hanyu Ichiro’s Malt Card Sold for HK$104,125/US$13,435 Estimate: HK$65,000-95,000/ US$8,500-12,000
Collectors responded enthusiastically to the legendary single malts produced by Karuizawa Distillery. Founded in 1955, the Karuizawa distillery stopped production in 2000 and was completely closed in 2011. Highlights included:
Lot 679 - 1 bottle of Karuizawa 1981 - #4961 Sold for HK$29,400/US$3,794 Estimate: HK$14,000-20,000/US$1,800-2,600
Lot 698 - 1 bottle of Karuizawa 1984 - #4021 Gold Fish Sold for HK$24,500/US$3,161 Estimate: HK$12,000-18,000/US$1,600-2,400
Lot 736 - 3 bottles of Karuizawa 12 Year Old Sold for HK$36,750/US$4,742 Estimate: HK$18,000-28,000/US$2,400-3,600
AN EXQUISITE COLLECTION OF SCOTTISH SINGLE MALTS The sale presented a superb collection of the finest Scottish single malts. Highlights included:
Lot 599 - 1 bottle of Macallan-Glenlivet 37 Year Old 1940 Sold for HK$36,750/US$4,741 Estimate: HK$18,000-28,000/US$2,400-3,600
Lot 625 - Macallan-Glenlivet 33 Year Old 1947 Sold for HK$22,050/US$2,845 Estimate: HK$11,000-16,000/US$1,400-2,000
The sale showcased a fine selection of brandy which was well received by collectors. Highlights included: Lot 21 - 6 bottles of Domaine de la Romanee Conti 1979 (3 bottles of Fine Bourgogne & 3 bottles of Marc de Bourgogne) Sold for HK$73,500/US$9,484 Estimate: HK$30,000-46,000/US$3,800-6,000
Lot 495 - 2 bottles of fine Bourgogne Domaine de la Romanee Cont 1993 Sold for HK$24,500/US$3,161 Estimate: HK$8,000-12,000 US$1,000-1,600
BORDEAUX AND BURGUNDY GEMS:
Lot 42 - 1 bottle of Chateau Mouton Rothschild 1945 Sold for HK$104,125/US$13,435 Estimate: HK$65,000-90,000/US$8,500-12,000
Lot 241 - 5 bottles of La Tache Domaine de la Romanee Conti 1999 Sold for HK$165,375/US$21,339 Estimate: HK$110,000-160,000/US$14,000-20,000
Lot 458 - 12 bottles of Chateau La Mission Haut Brion 1982 Sold for HK$104,125/US$13,435 Estimate: HK$65,000-95,000/US$8,500-12,000
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About Zachys - Zachys is a third-generation family-owned fine wine retail and auction business based in New York, started in 1944. They are now celebrating their 70th Anniversary and more than 20 years in the auction business. Zachys Asia will hold its next Hong Kong sale on 30 May 2015.