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Sotheby's wine auction.

Top 15 Best & Most Prestigious (Online) Wine Auctions

Wine Auction News, Reviews & Resources (15+) Top 15 High-End Wine Auctions

A WINE AUCTION is an auction devoted to wine, sometimes in combination with other alcoholic beverages. There are two basic types of wine auctions: first hand wine auctions, where wineries sell their own wines, and second hand wine auctions, arranged by auction houses or other auctioneers to make it possible for any owners of wine to trade it. In most cases, the wines traded at wine auctions are collectible wine, so-called "fine wine". These are wines which are typically suitable for extended cellaring, and where some of the buyers are looking for mature wines which are no longer available through first-hand retail channels.

First hand wine auctions are usually arranged by wine industry organisations, and fill promotional or charitable purposes, or are used to gauge the market. The wines sold at such auctions are usually special lot wines, or back vintages stored by the producers. An example of such auctions is the annual wine auction held by Hospices de Beaune in Burgundy, where Burgundy wines from vineyards donated to the Hospices de Beaune are auctioned off by the barrel, and often bought by négociants who bottle and sell the wines to the consumer market. Another example are the German wine auctions where mostly special lot wines are sold, and are bought by a combination of private wine collectors and wine dealers.

Second hand wine auctions are arranged by many major auction houses, such as Christie's and Sotheby's. Prices for many wines at these auctions are used as a price indication for collectible wine when traded through other channels, such as First Growth Bordeaux wines sold by rare wine dealers, or when négociants sell mature wines from their stock to restaurants.

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    Wine Auction News, Reviews & Resources
  • ACKER MERRALL & CONDIT - since 1820. "The World's Leading Wine Auction House." Online auctions.
  • ARTCURIAL - Paris, France. International auctioneers. One of the leading French Fine Wines and Spirits auction houses.
  • AUCTION NAPA VALLEY - "The American Wine Classic." The Napa Valley Vintners’ annual auction that has supported and enhanced the wellbeing of the community since 1981.
  • Aymeric de Clouet - since 2011. Paris, France.
  • BONHAMS - since 1793. "Wines for sale are mostly held in our own temperature controlled warehouses in London and San Francisco whilst stock in New York and Hong Kong is also stored under temperature control at Western Carriers and Crown Cellars."
  • Brentwood Wine Company - since 1998. "The World's Most Interesting Wine Auctions." Brings you the world’s finest and rarest wine at exciting internet auctions.
  • CHRISTIE'S - since 1766. "With a succession of blockbuster sales and high-profile lots, Christie’s international Wine department once again led the global fine wine auction market by value and frequency of sales in 2013. Over the past year, we achieved wine sales of US$75 million/£48 million/HK$580.8 million worldwide, including all live, online-only and private sales, as well as the annual barrel auction for Hospices de Beaune. With sale centers in Europe, Asia and the United States, our unrivaled international network of consigners and buyers positions us as the global wine market leader."
  • Expertissim - since 2007. French online auction site.
  • Heritage Auctions - since 1976. "The World's Third Largest Auction House." Fine & Rare Wines.
  • La Part des Anges - since 2006. "An auction of top quality cognacs to sponsor various associations."
  • Les Hospices Civils de Beaune Wine auction - former charitable almshouse in Beaune, France. It was founded in 1443 by Nicolas Rolin, chancellor of Burgundy, as a hospital for the poor. The charity auction been arranged annually since 1859, taking place on the third Sunday in November amid a three-day festival devoted to the food and wines of Burgundy called Les Trois Glorieuses. The auction has been organised by Christie's since 2005, setting a record total figure at the 149th auction in 2009 when 799 barrels were up for sale, and 40% bids by telephone, internet or fax connecting some 500 participants from around the world, the auction has in recent years evolved from a wholesale market to a retail market.
  • MORRELL FINE WINE AUCTIONS - since 1947. "Now in its third decade, Morrell Fine Wine Auctions was the first company to hold public wine auctions in New York since the repeal of Prohibition. Since 1994, Morrell’s has auctioned nearly $90 million of wine, drawn from the cellars of the world’s greatest collectors."
  • OMEGA AUCTIONS - since 2010. "Fine Wine, Port & Spirits Auctions."
  • SOTHEBY'S WINE - since 1744. "Sotheby’s Wine is both a retail wine merchant and auctioneer, with a store in the lobby of Sotheby’s headquarters building in New York, at 72nd and York. Sotheby’s Wine, which was formerly known as Aulden Cellars, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sotheby’s Inc. In May 2009, we combined our retail and auction wine businesses under the “Sotheby’s Wine” name and now offer a full range of buying and selling services across both channels. With the launch of our retail website, we will be able to offer wine buyers a wider range of wines, available for more immediate delivery (and consumption), in addition to our regular auctions.
  • SPECTRUM WINE AUCTIONS - "Launched in 2009, Spectrum Wine Auctions is the world’s newest live and online auction house of fine collectible wine."
  • WINEBID.COM - since 1996. "The premier online wine auction. Buy and consign fine and rare wines at weekly auctions. We offer collectors complimentary appraisals." ine wine for the privileged many. WineBid is the world's largest online auction for fine wine and trusted new vintages to Buy Now.
  • ZACHYS WINE AUCTIONS - since 1994. "The Zachys Wine Auction experience reaches back to the introduction of wine auctions into New York City in 1994. Our global team of consultants poises Zachys Wine Auctions to reach the ever-expanding worldwide auction market."
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